The current Ross-on-Wye Town Council was formed in April 2015 following a Community Governance review of boundaries, incorporating the former Ross-on-Wye Town Council and the Ross Rural Parish Council. After the reorganisation of local government in 1973 under the Local Government Act 1972, which also established the South Herefordshire District Council the former town council was created. At that time the local government for Ross-on-Wye was three tier: Town Council, District Council and Hereford & Worcester County Council. Another reorganisation under the Local Government and Rating Bill took place in 1998, which established a unitary authority thus reducing the three tier system to two: the Town Council and the County of Herefordshire District Council.
The town is divided into three wards, East, North and West, with six councillors representing each ward, collectively representing the views of a population of approximately 11,600. Each councillor serves a term of four years, with the next elections taking place in May 2019. Anyone who has an interest in becoming a councillor can find out more here.
The Full Council meets each month (excluding August) and at other times during the year should the need arise. It also organises an Annual Town Meeting when the residents of the town are invited to question Councillors on any areas of concern. In addition to these meetings, the Council has six Committees: Amenities, Planning & Development, Policy & Management, Finance & Personnel, Community, Markets and Tourism and Neighbourhood Planning Steering Group. A schedule of meetings and the agenda and minutes (see full council or committee pages) are all available online.
There are a number of powers available to the Town Council to enable it to provide services and amenities. The Town Council exercises its judgement on how best to utilise any or all of these powers to benefit the residents.
The Town Council is financed mainly through the council tax system. Each year the Town Council meets to discuss its financial requirements, produces a budget and then submits its precept request to Herefordshire Council, which collects the money on behalf of the Town Council. For the Financial Year 1 April 2018 - 31 March 2019 the precept is £448,133.
Each year the Council must present its accounts for external audit. You can view the Annual Return here.
The Town Council is represented on a variety of other organisations both within the town and the wider community. A list of these organisations and the councillors who represent the council within them is also available. In particular the council is involved with the Twinning Associations and provides a civic reception each year for the visiting Mayor and guests from the twin towns.