Conservative call for four year elections rejected by SDC
A CONSERVATIVE motion calling for SDC to hold elections every four years was voted down during a meeting of the full council at Ebley Mill last Thursday (21 February).
Currently, a third of district councillors are elected every year, with no elections taking place every fourth year.
Councillor Paul Carter (Con, Nailsworth) and Cllr Dorcas Binns (Con, Minchinhampton) had proposed switching to all-out elections every four years, with all 51 seats contested at once.
The pair claimed the reform would reduce confusion about the electoral system, improve voter turnout, encourage longer-term planning and result in significant savings that could be used to fund better services for the district.
At the meeting, Cllr Debbie Young (Con, Chalford) said the existing electoral cycle caused a 'huge amount of disruption' to the council and public and needed to be overhauled.
However, Conservative non-group member Nigel Studdert-Kennedy (The Stanleys) voiced doubts about the size of any potential savings, saying 'they are not nearly as attractive as would appear'.
SDC's Labour leader Geoff Wheeler, said there would be extra costs associated with training new councillors, and his party joined with members of the Lib Dems and Greens to defeat the motion.