Which way, which place? - Birmingham consultations
There are two big consultations open at the moment in which you can have your say about the future of transport and local government boundaries.
The first consultation is for the West Midlands rail franchise. The Department for Transport opened a consultation on 16 December into the future of rail services in the West Midlands. The survey runs until 22 March and offers anyone with an interest the chance to give your views on what a new franchise might look like and what you might want as a passenger.
A July 2015 report from Transport Focus provided some feedback on what passengers felt of the franchise but this is your chance to give your own views.
London Midland currently operate the franchise which was extended until October 2017. London Midland provide over 1,300 services a day serving 170 stations of which they directly manage 145. More than 65.3 million journeys are made each year, with this figure more than double since 2004, http://www.birminghammail.co.uk/news/midlands-news/plan-remove-seats-toilets-midland-10721322
You can read the consultation document at: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/486764/west-midlands-rail-franchise.pdf
If you want to find to find out more or speak to someone about the proposed options there are public consultation events at stations, with information displayed at Birmingham Snow Hill and Birmingham New Street stations on Tuesday 9th February.
The Consultation closes on 22nd March and you can respond online at: http://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/west-midlands-franchise/
The second consultation, which has attracted debate and anger, is regarding local government ward boundaries with The Local Government Boundary Commission asking for comments on its draft recommendations for new ward boundaries across Birmingham.
The aim of the electoral review is to recommend ward boundaries that mean each councillor represents approximately the same number of voters. We also aim to ensure that the pattern of wards reflects the interests and identities of local communities as well as promoting effective local government. In order to achieve these aims, we need to re-draw ward boundaries across Birmingham.
This consultation is open until 8 February before the final recommendations are published in May 2016 and implemented in May 2018.
The following overview is reproduced from the LGBC website, http://www.lgbce.org.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0015/27204/Birmingham-draft-recs-Summary-Dec-2015.pdf
The proposals see the current 120 city councillors of Birmingham City Council reduced to 101 councillors.
Under the proposal the average number of voters per councillor is 7,215 - still the highest in the UK and an argument some local politicians have claimed for more, not less, councillors to be created.http://www.birminghammail.co.uk/news/midlands-news/birminghams-political-map-redrawn-19-10599203
Among the most controversial are changes to names and communities that see Moseley's village centre move into a newly titled Balsall Heath and Cannon Hill ward, the Jewellery Quarter in Winson Green ward and areas such as Acocks Green's split over three wards, http://www.birminghammail.co.uk/news/hundreds-turn-out-key-moseley-10752906; http://www.birminghammail.co.uk/news/midlands-news/plans-divide-acocks-green-spark-10646223; http://www.birminghampost.co.uk/news/regional-affairs/jewellery-quarter-calls-city-council-10722824
You can access the consultation at: www.consultation.lgbce.org.uk until 8 February.