(1) A council may resolve to make an application to the Minister to approve a decrease in the number of councillors within the limits referred to in section 224(1).
(2) The council must give not less than 42 days' public notice of its proposed resolution.
(3) After passing the resolution, the council must forward to the Minister a copy of the resolution, a summary of any submissions received by it and its comments concerning those submissions.
(4) The Minister may approve the application without amendment or may decline to approve the application.
(5) If the Minister approves the application, the number of councillors of the council is reduced to the number specified in the application with effect on and from the day appointed for the next ordinary election of councillors after the application is approved.
(6) Section 16 does not apply to a resolution of a council to make an application to the Minister under this section.
(7) An application may be made under this section after the commencement of the Local Government Amendment (Elections) Act 2011 but before the expiry of 5 months after that commencement.
(8) Nothing in this section prevents a council from making more than one application under this section or from taking action under section 224 to change the number of its councillors.
(9) A council for an area that is divided into wards may not make an application under this section for a decrease in the number of councillors that would result in the number of councillors for each ward being fewer than 3.