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Community councils

The role of community councils is to express the views of the community to local authorities and other public bodies, and to take action in the interests of its community.

Community Council Elections 2017

The deadline for nominations for election to all 41 community councils has now passed.  By the end of the nomination process on 14th September, sufficient nominations had been received to establish 32 community councils across West Lothian.  All 32 community councils will come into effect on 26th October, the date declared for the elections.

One area, Kirknewton Community Council, requires a contested election to be held in order to allow registered electors to decide the membership.  This election will be conducted by a postal ballot.  Ballot papers will be issued to all electors in the Kirknewton Community Council area to allow voters to chose their preferred candidates.  The count will take place on Thursday 26th October 2017 and the results will be announced later that evening.

The inaugural meetings of all 32 community councils will take place within 4-6 weeks of the election date.  The contact list of office-bearers, which can be found at the related documents section on this page, will be updated as each of these meetings take place and office-bearers are appointed.  It will be finalised on 5th December after the last inaugural meeting has taken place.

There will be 9 areas on 26th October that will not be represented by a community council as follows:-

  • Breich
  • Bridgend
  • Carmondean
  • Howden
  • Knightsridge
  • Longridge
  • Newton
  • Seafield
  • Torphichen

The council may issue a second calling for nominations to these community councils within 6 months of the date of election.  If you live in one of these areas and wish more information on setting a community council up, please contact Lorraine McGrorty on 01506 281609 or e-mail lorraine.mcgrorty@westlothian.gov.uk

If you have any questions about the election or community councils in general, please contact Lorraine McGrorty.

About Community Councils

West Lothian Council is required by law to have a Scheme for the Establishment of Community Councils in its area.   However, community councils are not part of the council's structure - they are independent bodies who run their own affairs.

The council arranges the community council elections which take place every 4 years in September or October.  The last elections took place on 31 October 2013.   There is provision for 41 community councils in West Lothian, of which there are currently 34 in operation.  A list of the office bearers can be found in the related document section of this page.

The council is responsible for setting community councils up when asked to in areas where no community councils exist and where there is sufficient local interest.  A list of the 7 areas where there are no community councils in operation at the moment, along with the procedure that needs to be followed to set a community council up in these areas, can also be found in the related document section.

The council provides basic annual grant funding and advice to community councils but what each community council does once it has been established, is a matter for each community council to determine.

In 1998, the West Lothian Association of Community Councils was set up.   The aim of the Association is to strengthen the identity of community councils across West Lothian.  Unfortunately, it ceased operating in January 2015 after it was unable to appoint a Chair at its AGM.  Any community council interested in setting the Association or such similar organisation back up should contact the Community Council Liaison Officer for advice.

The Community Council Liaison Officer is able to provide advice and assistance. The council's Liaison Officer is Lorraine McGrorty who is based at West Lothian Civic Centre in Livingston. Telephone 01506 281609 or e-mail lorraine.mcgrorty@westlothian.gov.uk.

Community Council Scheme and Supporting Information

The Scheme for Establishment of Community Councils in West Lothian sets out the basic rules which all community councils in West Lothian are expected to comply with.

Following extensive public consultation, a new scheme was adopted by the council on 24th February 2015.  It is supplemented by a Code of Conduct which all community councillors must abide by and a model constitution/ & standing orders which all community councils automatically adopt.

All of the documents can be found at the related documents section on this page.