Are Councillors paid?
No, our councillors do not receive an allowance. The exception to this is the Chair of the Council who receives an allowance to meet the expenses of that office.
We do reimburse some expenses such as mileage but we are unable (by law) to reimburse childcare costs.
Who decides if there will be a by-election?
A casual vacancy arises when a councillor leaves office between ordinary elections. This could be through resignation, death, disqualification or by failing to attend meetings.
When a casual vacancy arises, the Clerk will publish a notice giving the electors living in the ward 14 working days the opportunity to demand an election. If 10 electors write to the Returning Officer at Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council to request an election a by-election is triggered.
If fewer than 10 request an election, the parish council must instead co-opt a councillor to fill the vacancy.
If the vacancy occurs within the 6 months before an ordinary election no by-election will be held even if demanded. If a by-election is not demanded the council can choose to leave the vacancy unfilled until the election.
What support is provided?
The Clerk provides an induction for all new councillors and part of his role is provide advice and support to all councillors. Experienced councillors are often happy to support new councillors ‘find their feet’.
We encourage councillors to undertake training relevant to their roles and the needs of the council and councillors have access to advice from the Yorkshire Local Councils Association.
Where do the Wards come into it?
Thurcroft Parish is divided into two wards: Thurcroft North (Covering Thurcroft and Brampton-en-le Morthen) and Thurcroft South (Covering Laughton Common). It is the electors of the ward who vote in any given election, a councillor does not have to live in the ward they stand in.
In any election, you can only stand once i.e. in one ward. If you stand for more than one you will be not be validly nominated in either. However, you are not tied to a ward, so if you stand for election in Thurcroft North in one election, you could stand in Thurcroft South ward at the next.
Can I be a member of a Political party / Do I have to be?
Councillors can stand for election (or co-option) as candidates for a political party, to do so they must have permission from the party, usually through the local branch.
Councillors can also be independent of political parties.
Who can be a Thurcroft Parish Councillor?
Anyone aged 18 or over can stand for election (or co-option) if they meet certain qualification criteria. The first is that you are a British citizen, a citizen of either an eligible commonwealth nation or a qualifying EU citizen or EU citizen with retained rights.
The second qualification criteria is your connection to Knutsford; there are four different criteria you could meet and you only need to meet one of them to be able to stand.