Welsh Government
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Minister acts on Boundary Commission review

Local Government and Communities Minister, Carl Sargeant said yesterday that he has taken decisive action following the independent review into the electoral review processes of the Local Government Boundary Commission.

Speaking in Plenary the Minister said:

"In December 2010 I announced a decision to establish an independent review of the timetabling and quality issues associated with the electoral review programme by the Local Government Boundary Commission for Wales and to identify actions required to ensure the delivery of the reviews in good time for the 2016 elections. In March this year I designated Glyn Mathias to conduct the review and to report to me by June.

"I have now received the report and I would like to record my thanks to Mr Mathias and his team for producing a comprehensive and well-researched report within the agreed time-frame.

"I will publish the report today on the Welsh Government website. I fully accept the findings of the report which contains lessons for all of us, including the Welsh Government, concerned with the process of electoral reviews.  

"The most concerning finding, however, is the conclusion reached that the Local Government Boundary Commission for Wales has lost the confidence of its stakeholders and because of this is ‘not fit for purpose’.

"This is a most serious conclusion and I have decided to terminate the appointments of the three existing Commissioners. I believe that the taking of this decisive step and the early appointment of suitable replacements is necessary to recover the reputation of the Commission in the eyes of the public, local government and other interested parties. I will be seeking to make temporary appointments to take office until such time as a full and open appointment process can be organised.

"I will write to Anglesey council to inform the council that their current review will be temporarily suspended.  My intention is that necessary steps will be taken quickly so that the review can be re-started soon and be completed as close as possible to the original target date.

"I will issue a further statement to outline the next steps I intend to take in response to the recommendations."

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