The price of local democracy in Milton Keynes revealed

The price of holding elections in Milton Keynes later this year has been revealed as £196,443.

Every year MK Council is invited to agree the fees for borough and parish council elections, and any planned referendums on neighbourhood plans.

A ballot box

A ballot box

This week the full council, meeting on Wednesday evening, March 20, has been told that this year’s fees have been updated to take account of changes in the minimum / living wage.

There’s much more involved than opening polling stations and printing ballot papers.

The returning officer’s fees cover things like notices in all the wards – this year 19 borough seats will be up for grabs in May. And this will involve preparing, supplying and distributing nomination papers and forms of consent, verifying signatures and sending out postal votes.

Polling station staff receive up to £264 for a day’s work and the council also has to pay for the space for the voting booths and for renting out space for the count.