QUALITY parish councils who have co-opted members face losing their status in three years if all members are not elected.
Under current legislation, such councils have to be 80% elected, and can therefore have some coopted members.
However, the Local Government Act states that when the bodies renew their Quality Status they must be 100% elected. If not, they will lose the status in 2009.
The issue was raised by Tarvin Parish Council on May 22.
The council has recently received Quality Status and needs to replace three members. Some councillors expressed concern about the cost of an election.
Frank Thomas, a Helsby parish councillor who is on the National Association of Parish Councillors, said: 'People now think parish councils will have to go to a ballot. This may happen but only if more people come forward than there are places for councillors.' Cllr Thomas explained the measure is a safeguard and said: 'You hear of examples where an influential person has just co-opted their friends on to the council and this defeats the object of having a parish council.
'If there needs to be an election, the borough council pays.'
A city council spokesman said: 'If a parish council has an election on the same day as a city election we pay the cost, otherwise it will come out of the parish precept.'