All council seats up for grabs in May elections

VOTERS will choose 59 borough councillors, a police commissioner and parish councillors on May 6.

The Government confirmed last week that local elections are set to go ahead as planned after being delayed in 2020.

And all seats on RMBC — being reduced from 63 members to 59 — are available for the first time in five years.

The new set-up of 25 wards includes 16 which will have two councillors rather than three, following a 2018 Boundary Commission for England review.

Parish council elections — except for Catcliffe, Orgreave and Waverley — will take place on the same day should there be more candidates than vacancies.

And voters in Dinnington St John’s parish area will also be able to take part in the Dinnington neighbourhood plan referendum.

Polling cards will be sent out from the end of this month, including RMBC ward information and which polling station to use if not voting by post or proxy.

A council spokesman said: “Work is under way to ensure that the elections are conducted as safely as possible, including measures such as transparent screens and providing hand sanitiser at polling stations.”

Sharon Kemp, Rotherham Council’s chief executive and returning officer, said: “The safety of voters, poll staff and candidates is our primary concern for these elections, and we are making plans to ensure that they can be conducted in a Covid-secure way.

Polling stations will be safe places to cast your ballot, but voters may consider alternatives such as postal ballots and voting by proxy. It is quick and easy to register to vote. We would urge Rotherham residents not to leave it too late to register.”

The deadline for voter registration is Monday, April 19. Applications for postal ballots and proxy voting close at 5pm the following day.