Candidates planning to stand for election in Somerset on 5 May should submit their nominations soon to meet the deadline.
Nominations close on 5 April – and papers must be submitted in person by 4pm to the local district council office in Mendip, Sedgemoor, Somerset West and Taunton, and South Somerset.
Nomination packs are available here. A useful guide is also available. Candidates can attend a virtual drop-in on Wednesday 30 March between 5.15 and 6.15pm, Joining instructions will be supplied to those wishing to attend – please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Two previous drop-ins proved popular with those who joined the virtual events with questions on what support is available to successful candidates and suggestions on how new members can meet and get to know officer teams.
The drop-in provides a “safe space” for people to ask questions, voice any concerns and learn at first hand the process involved in standing for election on 5 May. The presentation is available online here.
These are crucial elections for Somerset with the creation of a new, unitary council in April 2023 – the first major change to the way the county is governed in almost 50 years. New councillors will build a new and very different kind of local government, that will shape the county for decades. They will have more power to drive the changes people want, whether standing for their county, or more locally in city, town, and parish council elections.
A total of 110 councillors will be elected – two for each of the County Council’s 55 divisions. They will serve a five-year term in office. City, town, and parish council elections are taking place on the same day – 5 May – and those elected will also serve for five years.
For their first year, County Councillors will take responsibility for all current County Council services and oversee the local government reorganisation to establish a single unitary council on 1 April 2023. District councils will remain until 31 March 2023 and the councillors serving on them will continue in their roles until that date.
From 1 April 2023, the 110 councillors of the unitary council will be responsible for services that are currently delivered by the county and four district councils, ranging from adults and children’s social care to highways and housing, and from libraries to planning and licensing.