TO help you before polling day on May 7, we have asked the political parties to explain why you should vote for them at the Tendring Council elections.

Independent – Michael Talbot

The “Independent Group ” is not a “group ” of councillors who are bound by collective policy decisions, as are political groups on Tendring Council, but are a collection of individual members who form themselves as a “group ” to ensure that a fair share of council business and council committee places are allocated to them as members, using the Widdicombe procedures introduced by the Local Government and Housing Act 1989.

We do not have regular “group” policy meetings and no individual “group ” member can be bound to vote in a particular way because their colleagues have decided a policy.

Each individual councillor sees his or her role as directly representing the electors of Tendring and, in particular, the ward they represent, quite irrespective of any political parties policy.

An Independent member has all the usual channels of communication at hand.

They have contact with their Member of Parliament, their county councillor and all the officers at Tendring, in exactly the same way as any other council member.

I cannot say how many Independent persons will stand for election or how many will be elected. They do not have to ask me for permission.

If their electors vote for them, they become councillors and will be welcome to join a friendly “group ” of like-minded individuals who want to “Keep Party Politics out of Local Government ”.

There are no rules, no party discipline, no big brother watching what we do, just council members doing their level best to support their local residents and community.