Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Elections fatigue

Elections Consultative Group met again this morning - last in a long line of meetings that have been trawling over the problems encountered during the May 2007 elections.

It does finally appear that a pretty comprehensive set of reports is now going to the December meeting of the Full Council.

I posted about all of this way back in June - so, it has taken nearly six months for this work to be completed. To be fair to the Council, the whole process was rightly delayed to await the final publication of the Gould Report.

... and, it does appear that Gould's recommendation to de-couple the Holyrood and Local elections (which seems to have been accepted by UK and Scottish Governments) will take the 'heat' out of a lot of the issues which were faced on May 3rd - so, maybe the report going to the December Council meeting will not now be as contentious as I had first thought??

Just in passing, the de-coupling of National/Local elections is something I've firmly changed my mind on over the years. I'm now convinced that yes, for the Council, it will lead to local issues being debated/decided in isolation and on their own merits, but that tragically the turnout for those elections will drop by around 15% as a result. Not good.

And really ... are local issues so separate from national politics? Who is it that provides some 80% of our finance? ... and who are we going to have to sign Single Outcome Agreements with in the not too distant future?

... surely far better to change the electoral system for Holyrood to STV-PR and leave both elections on the same day :-))

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