What can my local councillor do for me?
The residents of Rushcliffe elect 44 councillors every four years to set the vision and direction of the Council, and to represent their local community. Councillors have to balance the needs and interests of residents, the political party they represent (if any) and the Borough as a whole.
The role and responsibilities of a local councillor include:
- representing the community for which they are elected
- developing and reviewing council policy
- scrutinising decisions taken by the councillors on the Cabinet
- regulatory, quasi-judicial and statutory duties
- community leadership and engagement.
For many councillors, representing their ward is the most important aspect of their role. This can involve a variety of activities but usually means councillors will spend time:
- Listening to the views of local people so that they know what problems and issues exist in their ward
- Ensuring that the needs of their ward are taken into account when the council is making decisions about how it is run, what services it should provide and how it should spend its money
- Working with council officers to bring about improvements to their ward
- Holding surgeries where local people can drop in with enquiries about the council or raise issues and concerns about any problems that they have which the councillor can deal with or seek to resolve
- Getting involved in local campaigns
- Offering support to local schools, community groups, businesses and other organisations.
The most challenging aspect of being a local councillor is balancing the needs of the community they represent and the needs of the Borough overall when making strategic decisions.