The day before the debate on restrictions to public speaking takes place, another restriction will be debated at the annual council meeting on Wednesday (14 May), as the council proposes to amend the constitution.

On page 26 – the “annual constitution update” the new way forward for motions (which the independent group use a lot for a way of getting something of public interest to be debated), is that any motion not directly linked to the council’s business, to be first referred to a committee.

This is apparently to “facilitate a relevant and informed debate.”

I would argue that it is a restriction on one of the few ways opposition councillors have of getting something that is in the public interest, debated and decided on by the whole council.  The new proposal will mean a delay on any council debating a motion for around three months.

Currently, motions can be submitted around two weeks ahead of any full council meeting.  The voting pattern of the conservatives (often a block vote takes place) in relation to many motions, have led to charges that the ruling group has been whipped.

Previous motions appear to have caused a bit of embarrassment for the ruling conservative group, as can be seen from this blog-post – https://www.claire-wright.org/index.php/post/motion_on_cutting_tourism_vat_is_headline_grabbing_soundbites