New law to make it easier for more people in Wales to stand to be local councillors

24 Dec 2019 10:35 AM

Councillors will be able to remotely attend council meetings more easily and job share cabinet posts, while councils will need to broadcast their meetings online, under new Welsh Government plans to support increasing diversity and transparency in local government.

The Local Government and Elections (Wales) Bill, introduced to the National Assembly for Wales in November, provides for the establishment of a new and reformed legislative framework for local government elections, democracy, performance and governance.

Increasing the diversity of elected members helps councils to better represent the communities they serve, by bringing a wider range of views and experiences to the table.

To achieve this, the Bill will:

The Bill will also ensure political decision-making should take place in the public eye. To support this, the Bill puts in place new requirements for public engagement and participation.

Councils will be required to:

Minister for Housing Local Government, Julie James said:

As part of our ambition to have strong local government in Wales, we want people to feel well-represented by their councillors. The proposals in this Bill are designed to increase the diversity of our local councillors, as well as public participation in local democracy.

We want to enable a local democracy which reflects our diversity as a nation. This Bill will help encourage far more people in Wales to stand to be councillors, and ensure people from all backgrounds are able to take up leadership and executive roles. The Bill also takes steps to encouraging a more diverse range of members of the public to engage with local democracy.

This will help ensure local government in Wales delivers better public services for everyone, helping people who need support, when and where they need it most.