The Andover Town Clerk was informed that an election has been called for the vacant seat in Winton ward for the Town Council yesterday, 8th May.
“I was disappointed to receive this news because I had hoped we would be able to co-opt a suitable community minded individual and not have to spend £15,000 on an election. That figure represents over 10% of the Council’s total annual budget. Money which I believe could have been put to better use and which will in any case seriously impact on the work we will be able to carry out next year” said Cllr David Drew, Chairman of the Council.
The Council already sets aside £8,000 every year for elections which normally take place every four years. The next elections are due in 2015, at the same time as those for the Borough Council and possibly the General Election too.
David Drew went on to say “With only two years to go until our next elections I do question the need to have an expensive election at this time. Any new Councillor will take much of the time left to get to know how we operate before campaigning starts again: it’s hardly worth the £15,000 in my opinion.”
Test Valley Borough Council has advised that the election will be held on the 11th July with nominations closing on the 14th June.