§ MR. BARRAN (York, W.R., Otley)
asked the President of the Local Government Board, Whether it is true that the Board have decided to reduce the number of members on the Ilkley Local Board from 18 to 12 against the unanimous decision of a public meeting (called by the churchwarden and overseer) against such reduction;and, whether, in view of that decision, they will postpone the reduction till after the ratepayers have had an opportunity, by their votes, of expressing their opinion on the question at the next election?
§ THE PRESIDENT (Mr. RITCHIE) (Tower Hamlets. St. George's)
The Local Government Board were applied to by the Ilkley Local Board to issue an Order reducing the number of the members of the Local Board from 12 to 9. They were subsequently informed of the resolution passed at the meeting referred to;and, before arriving at any decision, they directed a local inquiry by one of their Inspectors. After full consideration of the matter the Board deemed it desirable to comply with the request of the Local Board, on the ground that the arrangement was one likely to conduce to the satisfactory conduct of the business of the Board;and an Order was issued accordingly on the 8th of this month. The number of members as now fixed is fully equal to that which is now usually assigned to a district with a population such as that of the Ilkley District. If the Order of the Local Government Board had been deferred, there could have been no reduction in the number of members to be elected at the coming election.