On 27 April Defra made a Direction on behalf of the Secretary of State under Regulation 28 of the Land Drainage Regulations 1938 regarding the notifications for Internal Drainage Board (IDB) elections.
The effect of the Direction is to confirm that any notice, certificate or declaration required under the Regulations may be advertised through publicly available websites instead of only by insertion in one or more newspapers circulating in the Internal Drainage District. IDBs may still advertise notices in local newspapers if they so wish. The Direction also makes clear that IDBs can, in addition to the methods described above, also place the notice, certificate or declaration in additional places such as publicly available notice boards, local magazines, newsletters and other circulars distributed to residences and businesses within the Internal Drainage District to ensure access for those people who do not have internet facilities.
IDBs are made up of both; Elected Members representing the occupiers of land who pay drainage rates, and Appointed Members who are selected by local authorities which pay a special levy to IDBs. Elected members of IDBs hold office for periods of three years and elections are held as per these regulations.
Modernising these regulations has been a matter ADA has been discussing with Defra on behalf of IDB members. ADA hopes this change should both help increase the transparency of Board election notices and provide a cost saving to Boards. It also provides a strong incentive for IDBs to utilise and promote the use of their public facing websites.