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Motion to change Lincolnshire County Council voting system defeated

By Lincolnshire Echo  |  Posted: December 13, 2013

By Adrian Curtis

Comments (7)

UKIP member Robin Hunter-Clarke failed in his bid to change the democratic process at full meeting of the Lincolnshire County Council this afternoon.

Mr Hunter-Clarke claimed the current ‘cabinet style’ system meant many councillors had little influence over the decision to turn the majority of Lincolnshire’s libraries into volunteer-run hubs.

He was dismayed when the plan was given the official go-ahead by just nine executive members and branded the decision making process ‘undemocratic’.

The Skegness councillor’s motion focused on a return to the committee form of governance which would address the ‘democratic deficit’ at County Hall.

But his motion was amended by Labour who claimed more decisions could be made by full council.

Labour wanted the current all-party working group on the constitution to bring back proposals to achieve that aim and Mr Hunter-Clarke agreed to back it instead of his own.

“I supported the amendment,” said Mr Hunter-Clarke.

"We do need change and hopefully we need to work together and that’s why I supported it.”

Numerous councillors hit out against going back to a committee-style form of governance.

Many believed the ‘cabinet-style’ system currently in place was far better and put forward strong arguments for its retention.

Martin Hill, leader of the council, said: “These people do not like the fact that they have not got the majority and that is what it is all about.

"I could not support it.”

UKIP and Labour’s hopes were dashed in the final vote in which they were defeated by 35 votes to 26 with one abstention.

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  • Pete67  |  December 14 2013, 3:19PM

    Dictators will always cling onto power to the bitter end!

    Rate   3
  • Menshy  |  December 13 2013, 9:21PM

    If a decision to cut valued services can be carried by just 9 of 77 councillors then Mr Hunter-Clarke has a valid point. The system isn't flawed it's plain wrong. I bet a vote to cut the Chief Executives pay by 50% couldn't be carried by so few. Nor is a committee system the answer since they waste too much time (at our expense) in pointless talking shops. This should be a straightforward vote - 77 Councillors so if 39 vote for the motion it is carried and we'd all be able to see what our councillor is doing in our name - as it stands they can cop out by hiding their input and views behind the 'executives' decisions. The only route I can see for change is if people take up the matter with their councillor demanding they sort this out or complain to the council using the complaints procedure. Of course neither option will achieve what you want but you have to jump through those hoops before you can take the case to the Local Government Ombudsman who should judge on whether or not the current system is malpractice. I for one will be taking this as quickly as possible to the ombudsman...

    Rate   7
  • GedlingTnPeck  |  December 13 2013, 8:57PM

    Shame onthe Tories but then what do they know about democracy.Typical Lincolnshireshire County Council. If the majority of Councillors are not involved in decision making what are we paying their allowances for? The public is being ripped off as usual by the privelaged few

    Rate   6
  • wonko  |  December 13 2013, 7:26PM

    Turkeys don't vote for Christmas, Labour don't vote to end their dictatorship. The cabinet system is undemocratic, it should be changed.

    Rate   4
  • InsideStory  |  December 13 2013, 6:48PM

    Since the last election Martin Hill has shown his true colours in many ways and i look forward to the day he loses his seat and he has to live like any normal person without his power ,he ain't going to like being toppled off his throne of power . Vote UKIP the true voice of the people .

    Rate   8
  • InsideStory  |  December 13 2013, 6:04PM

    Martin Hill, leader of the council, said: "These people do not like the fact that they have not got the majority and that is what it is all about. No Martin Hill you and your cronies dont like the idea of losing some of your power and that is the b all and end all .

    Rate   6
  • jaime  |  December 13 2013, 5:53PM

    Is this serious the police think they've done a fab job - Does the court consider tax payers - Nobody injured in this and my taxes will pay to keep these behind bars!! Thank you - Surely life ban on going to football matches, pay for damages and get these 12 to do some community services to give back to the community would make more sense - You get less for drink driving and killing somebody and really don't get the sense in this - We are in a recession cut down my taxes and let these yobs give something back for a change

    Rate   -2