We have 59 Councillors elected to represent 38 wards (local areas). Councillors are chosen by local people in elections, which take place every four years.
Councillors are responsible for making sure that the services that the Council provides meet the needs of residents and those who work in the county borough. They do this by setting the overall policies and strategies for the Council and by monitoring the way in which these are implemented.
The full Council of 59 councillors is responsible for agreeing the main policies and priorities, including the Council budget.
Councillors have a duty to the whole county borough, but they have a special duty to the people who live in the ward (electoral division) they were elected to represent, including the people who did not vote for them.
Candidates for election to the Council are either nominated by political parties or stand as independents.