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Become a Councillor

Community councils play a vital role in fostering strong, engaged, and well-represented local communities. They provide a platform for residents to influence decisions that impact their daily lives and work collaboratively on initiatives that enhance their local environment and quality of life.

Becoming a Campbell Park Community Councillor is a meaningful way to serve your local community, addressing specific issues and contributing to the wellbeing and development of your local area.

Understand the Role

Councillors are elected to represent the interests of their local community. Responsibilities include:

  • Attending council meetings
  • Making decisions on local services, policies, and budgets
  • Representing the views of constituents
  • Working on local issues and projects
  • Managing community buildings and spaces
  • Organising local events and activities
  • Working with local organisations and authorities to improve services

Check Eligibility

To stand for election as a CPCC councillor, you must:

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Be a British citizen, an eligible Commonwealth citizen, or a citizen of the Republic of Ireland, a qualifying EU citizen or an EU citizen with retained rights
  • Be a local elector or have lived, worked, or owned property in the area or within three miles of it for at least the previous 12 months

Get Nominated

You will need to complete a nomination form, which includes:

  • A proposer and seconder who are registered electors in the area
  • A consent to nomination form. These forms are available from Milton Keynes City Council

Understand the Election Process

Community council elections are usually held every four years. If there are more candidates than seats available, an election will be held. If the number of candidates is equal to or fewer than the number of seats, the candidates are elected unopposed.

Campaign

If an election is required:

  • Develop a clear platform that addresses local issues and outlines your plans
  • Engage with residents through door-to-door canvassing, social media and local events
  • Distribute leaflets and put-up posters
  • Participate in local debates or forums

Election Day

Encourage residents to vote and continue engaging with them until the polls close.

Post-Election

If elected:

  • Attend CPCC’s induction and training sessions
  • Start participating in council meetings and activities
  • Communicate regularly with residents and work on local issues

Tips for Success

  • Get Informed: Learn about the key issues facing your area and understand the responsibilities of a CPCC councillor
  • Engage with the Community: Build relationships with local residents, businesses, and organisations
  • Be Accessible: Make sure residents know how to reach you and listen to their concerns
  • Stay Committed: Serving as a CPCC councillor requires time, effort, and a genuine interest in improving your community

Community Council co-option process

The co-option process for filling a vacancy on a local council is an alternative to holding a by-election. Co-option occurs when there is a need to fill a councillor vacancy that has not been filled through an election, typically due to no candidates standing or the number of vacancies being equal to or greater than the number of candidates. Here is a step-by-step guide to understanding the co-option process:

Declaration of a Vacancy

When a vacancy arises (e.g., due to resignation or disqualification of a councillor), the council must officially declare the vacancy.

Public Notice of Vacancy

The council must give public notice of the vacancy. This is usually done by:

  • Posting notices on CPCC noticeboards.
  • Publishing the notice on the CPCC website.
  • Informing local residents through Homeground magazine and social media.

Opportunity for a By-Election

A by-election will be called if, within 14 working days of the notice being posted, at least 10 qualified electors request an election. If no such request is made, the council can proceed with the co-option process.

Advertise the Co-option

If no by-election is requested, CPCC will advertise the vacancy for co-option, including:

  • Details on how to apply and the deadline for applications

Application Process

Interested candidates should submit:

  • A letter of interest to the Clerk of Council (by email or hard copy).
  • A brief personal statement or resume outlining their experience, skills, and reasons for wanting to become a CPCC councillor.

Co-option Decision

The decision to co-opt a candidate is made at a meeting of the Community Council. The process typically involves:

  • Public Meeting: The co-option must be decided in a public meeting of the Community Council
  • Discussion and Voting: Councillors discuss the candidates and vote. The candidate receiving the majority of votes is co-opted onto the council

Formal Appointment

Once a candidate is chosen:

  • Declaration of Acceptance: The co-opted councillor must sign a Declaration of Acceptance of Office before or at the start of the next council meeting
  • Induction and Training: The new councillor should attend induction sessions and any relevant training to familiarise themselves with the role and responsibilities

Resources

  • National Association of Local Councils (NALC): Offers guidance and resources for local councillors (nalc.gov.uk)
  • Milton Keynes City Council: Can provide nomination forms and detailed information about the election process (www.milton-keynes.gov.uk)
Published
26 March 2024
Last Updated
14 June 2024