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council petitions - from 100 to 1,500 signatures now needed to secure a debate

Barking and Dagenham Council has changed the amount of signatures needed to have an issue debated from 100, which is quite low, to 1,500 which seems very high.
Do you think this hampers you in securing debates? Maybe you feel this is better as only the most important issues get debated. 
Is this an attack on your right to be heard?
check out for more on this or next week's Post.


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Ken R inactive
Michael I saw this in the minutes/agenda of the last assembly meeting and apparently the changes to the constitution were implemented immediately. So the latest CPZ petition which I submitted will not reach the assembly for me to put across the issues..

Wearing my cynical hat, which I do most of the time,it would appear that Mr Farrant, the originator of this suggestion, is trying to make the process of local government run smoother and much more efficiently.

But surely they are missing the point: The reason that  so much of their time is spent on dealing with issues raised by petitions is SIMPLY because so many of the residents are unhappy with many of the council policies.

I am sure that had all the petitions relating to the CPZ issues been joined together we could have made the 1500  signatures required under the new constitution. 

Just one further point on the Parking issues, very short, as I'm sure that those not involved or affected will be sick of reading about  it.

The council have now decided to take action against the lawbreaking motorist who drive across the footway, without the benefit of a dropped kerb, to park outside their property. 

Talk about arse about face. They whacked the lawful and honest motorist for more money for parking fees/tax. before preventing the illegal crossover on the footway. ABSOLUTLEY BLOODY RIDICULOUS.!

Some may say that the number required on a petition to activate a debate is irrelevant as the council don't listen irrespective of the numbers of complaints.
Pam D
Once the council have decided something it happens even if 20,000 people sign a petition against it.  Our totally undemocratic 52 Labour councillors council don't care what we, the residents, think about anything because they're going to do it anyway.They "advertise" public meetings for consultation so that no-one actually sees them and then the motion goes through because no-one turns up.  This happened over us losing our Olympic sporting legacy of a sports hall to stay in Barking; it will have happened over many other things too.  If they do actually listen, then it's because they have maybe more than one option and are open to suggestion; not of course that they will go with our suggestions but it makes us feel like we are having an input!!
David M
If you do not like the way the council do not listen to the people then vote them out but do not keep moaning 
I bet you still vote for labour at the next election so you get what you vote for.
It is about time people realised Labour, Tories and Libs are against working class so either vote for ukip if possible or do not vote. The trouble is in Dagenham and Barking  people still think labour is for working class but they are all rich people now and do not understand and feel poverty .
Ken R inactive
The idea of  to "keep on moaning" is to share opinions and occasionally argue over them. If people don't vent their spleen of "moan" how will anyone know what the public feeling is, or what support of their ideas exist.

Who has said that they voted for Labour in the last election, whether locally or nationally. I don't recall reading any post's on this blog whereby anyone has come out and supported any political party 100%. If they do support any of them 100% then they should see a doctor.

I believe that we should re-write legislation so that one can be fined, as in Australia if one does not vote.

Finally I believe that people "moan" because they;
a) have the right to do so
b) maybe care about what happens in the community
c) do not always agree with the narrow minded sweeping statements that all the supporters of the three main parties "are against the working class" 
In modern times with the communication devices available 1500 is not an unreasonable amount to collect .100 is far too small and could tie up valuable council time.
John H
Given the number of registered voters in the borough the quota of signatures required is not unreasonable imo.

However the biggest obsticle to achieving this quota is the voter apathy which in recent years has grown significantly.
Michael A
All good points and I agree apathy is a big problem.
With all the ways of communicating we now have at our disposal you would have thought this target would be possible if there was enough strength of feeling on a particular issue.
It just seems a big jump from a very low number previously.
Ken R inactive
Michael, unfortunately APATHY RULES, as proven by the numbers who voted in the last local elections. The councilors should be grateful, for had that not been the case many of them would not be in office.

If you look at the numbers in relation to petitions, you will see how low the returns are for e-petitions compared to when people get off their backsides and canvas.

The council know full well from these statistics that they will never again have to be addressed at the assembly, hence the big jump.

And yes there maybe a better use of their time...... get the policies right, as required by the electorate whom they are supposed to represent.
Well that says it all.If you can not get 1500 signatures on a petition then not enough care for it to matter.
Ken R inactive
No, maybe it means that not many are aware of the issue. Maybe they don't use Facebook, Streetlife or read local papers, for whatever reason. How many people, outside of the allotment community would be aware of your issues over Melville Road if it were not for sites such as this, how many would take time out of their "busy schedule" to sign an e-petition. It doesn't mean that ALL people do not care it means that ALL people may not be aware.. So we have apathy through ignorance as well as apathy through 'not caring'. 

On a different topic, when you went to the new eaterie at the Chequers was it noticeable that all the staff were "local's"?
Derek G
as i have said in the past, here is the link for the e-petition as follows
so far only 39 signatures to date and due to end on 1st February 2013, people need to sign this petition
Maria W
Well said, Ken R, for pointing out to David M that people have the right to moan- especially on this blog. What is the point of having these discussions if someone is coming back with the "Stop moaning" mantra. I wholeheartedy agree that the whole point of the blog is to share opinions and - yes - even argue your point- but just to come back with "stop moaning" comments is neither useful or democratic.

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