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Town and Parish Councils

As well as the county and district councils in Somerset there is another tier of local government - the parish and town councils.

These cover a smaller geographical area, usually that of a town or village and its surrounding area. They have a statutory remit as local authorities, and have the power to raise funds through a Precept which is collected from all residents through the Council Tax system. They have limited duties but wide powers, should they decide to use them.

They often cover things such as allotments, bus shelters, village halls, children's playgrounds, parks, seats, signs, notice boards. Larger councils may also be involved in street lighting, burial grounds, and playing fields. Parish and town councils have a significant input to planning and are statutory consultees for individual planning applications.

There are 62 parish or town councils in Mendip. By their very nature, parish and town councils should maintain a close relationship with their local community. These councils are obliged to organise at least one town or parish meeting each year which all electors may attend and raise issues of concern.