VOTERS in Moray will be among more than 500 million people across Europe who will go to the polls next month to elect 751 members of the European Parliament.
The main roles of the parliament, which sits in Brussels, include debating and passing European laws covering agriculture, civil liberties, energy policy, foreign affairs, immigration, trade and EU funds; scrutinising other European Union institutions and debating and adopting the EU’s budget.
Moray is part of the electoral region for Scotland, a single constituency which returns six directly-elected MEPs.
The election will take place across Europe over four days, with the UK voting on Thursday, May 22. Votes will be counted on Sunday, May 25, once the polls have closed in all 28 member states, with the results being declared around 10pm British time.
This week has signalled the start of the countdown, with potential candidates now able to collect and return their nomination papers. These must be lodged by 4pm on Thursday, April 24.
More information, including details of how to obtain a nomination pack, are available at http://edinburgh.gov.uk/elections
According to a Moray Council spokesman, electors need to make sure they are registered by Tuesday, May 6, if they intend to vote.
The Moray turnout at the last European elections in 2009 was 29%, marginally higher than the overall Scottish figure of 28.5%. The overall UK turnout was 34.7%.