One of the most important changes to the way local government operates was the introduction, in May 2007, of multi-member wards.
There are 19 wards in Aberdeenshire, each with either three or four elected members, replacing the smaller, single-member wards which had existed.
Each of these members has an equal responsibility for the whole ward. To make this work effectively, ward members have to work together in a collaborative way – sharing duties, information and knowledge.
This may mean not all councillors attend a meeting in their area, instead arranging to share attendance with their local colleagues.
In some areas members may have agreed to take on duties on a geographical basis, or by expertise in a particular subject area.
Councillors can be contacted in many ways – by simply speaking to them in the street, phoning or emailing them, writing a letter, or attending a local surgery.
Details of councillors’ surgeries, such as locations and times, can be found in the local press, or under some councillors’ contact detail entries on the council website.
If you need to contact your local councillor but are unsure who this is then you can use the interactive mapping service. (http://www.aberdeenshire.gov.uk/local/map.asp)
Contact details for all councillors, including addresses and phone numbers, can be found in alphabetical order with details of wards they have responsibility for here: http://www.aberdeenshire.gov.uk/councillors/contact/index.asp
Information, including membership of policy and area committees, political affiliation, expense payments and the council’s register of interests is available on the Aberdeenshire Council website.
Answers to questions you may have about multi-member wards are available at: http://www.aberdeenshire.gov.uk/councillors/member_wards.asp
To see more information about how Aberdeenshire Council operates, please see: http://www.aberdeenshire.gov.uk/council/index.asp