2010 local elections in Lewisham could be held under PR

Cllr Mark MorrisThe 2010 local elections in Lewisham could be held under a system of proportional representation following widespread support to a Liberal Democrat proposal at a recent Council meeting.

Proposing the motion Cllr Mark Morris said “Lewisham Council have volunteered for various pilot schemes at previous elections, now that Scotland have agreed to fight next years local election by a fairer system, Lewisham should lead the way in England.”

The motion which had cross- party support agreed noted that the Scottish local elections were being fought by single transferable vote (STV) and called for the next Lewisham full council elections to be fought under a fairer system. A proposal will be put to the relevant government departments requesting permission for Lewisham to operate a pilot scheme at the 2010 local elections.

Leader of Lewisham Liberal Democrats Cllr Mark Morris said, “If Councils up and down the Country demand STV for local elections the Government might agree to several pilot schemes and that could herald the end of the first pass the post system south of the border as well as in Scotland.”

(Image sourced from Lewisham Liberal Democrats)

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  • hywelmorgan 27th Oct '06 - 2:15pm

    I thought the relevant piece of legislation didn’t allow pilots using a different electoral system though.

    Still a good idea – if 20-30 local authorities did the same it would create some pressure for a change and the local government area is where we should really concentrate efforts on PR as we can use the idea of bringing England & Wales into line with the other two nations in the UK.

  • hywelmorgan 27th Oct '06 - 4:15pm

    Don’t think so in this regard. They needed a bill to change the date in 2001 and for the all-postal pilots in 2004.

    It’s not impossible there is some enabling power in the bill which allows the operation of pilots (RPA 2000 I think it is – they all begin to merge in my head a bit!). The government is fond of doing that sort of thing – the 2004 Act gave the secretary of state the power to make ANY change to election law that he saw fit. He could have universal suffrage at that election and have been acting totally lawfully (actually there would have been Human Rights implications but why spoil a good point 🙂

    As you point out though a private bill might be the next option Lewisham could consider

    I could look up the detail but not just at the moment 🙂

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