Yes, it is that time of year again.
As electors, we have the opportunity to speak out, and say if we think our local government (parish) council is spending the council tax we pay it in a correct and proper manner.
The year’s financial accounts of our civil-parish council – the Draycott In The Moors Parish Council – have just been completed, and you, as an elector who votes in Council polls, have a right to see them and query them.
It’s called the ‘Exercise of Electors’ Rights’ – and, why not use your rights?
The Audit Commission outlines and encourages the sorts of questions you should ask in its Guide to Council Public Accounts.
What sort of questions can you ask?
Well, for example, you may feel too much is being earmarked for expenses or wages, or you may feel that the parish council is spending the money it receives in council tax on matters it shouldn’t, or you may think it’s spending to much in general.
Or – you may want to congratulate the council on how wisely it spends its income!
However, if you do want to make a comment, the fact is that the Audit Commission would like us to do it right now.
The Commission gives us a month to do the necessary – from April 24th to the cut-off date of May 23rd.
To see the accounts…
The parish clerk (who holds the accounts) is inviting electors to call round to her house to examine the accounts, any time between 10am-7pm over the next few days until May 23rd.
The Clerk lives at 136 Draycott Old Road – but if you’re thinking of calling in, it would be a courtesy to give her a call in advance, on 01782 394807. If you don’t get an answer more than a few times on that number, do contact the Audit Commission.
And, if you feel strongly that there is an issue that really does need addressing, you should contact the Audit Commission with the specifics of the issue.
Good luck – and do tell us too if you have an issue with the way the money is spent (by using the comments-box below).
Or – do it in person
Don’t forget: you can also put your queries in person – at the Draycott Annual Parish Assembly on May 28th.
Still confused about how parish councils function in local government? A new website CPALC explains all you need to know about parish councils in clear and user-friendly terms.
See the CPALC – Communities, Parish and Local Councils website