Purpose of Community Councils

Community Councils have a statutory right to exist. The Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973 that originally set up Community Councils states the purpose of a Community Council is: "To ascertain, co-ordinate and express to the local authorities for its area and to public authorities, the views of the community which it represents ...... and to take such action in the interests of the community as appears to it to be expedient and practicable.

The role of Community Councils is to therefore find out the views of local people on local issues and present these to the local authority and other relevant public bodies. Community Councils are also able to take action to promote the wellbeing of the community and to foster a community spirit, allowing the people of an area to voice their opinions on any matter affecting their lives, their welfare, their environment, its development and amenity.

Community Councils should aim to represent all people in the area without prejudice: they are non-party political and non-sectarian. They must call for nominations publicly and hold contested elections. Any person over 16 years of age and resident in the Community Council area, can be nominated to join their local Community Council.

Community Councils are regularly consulted by the local authority and public bodies on a wide range of issues which affect their area, such as planning, environment and health.

All Community Council meetings are open to the public. They receive a basic annual grant from the local authority towards running costs.

Based on Moray Council statements on the purpose of Community Councils