The Simon Bull Column: Vote for democracy

A little over one third of the Bournemouth electorate voted for the party that holds 95% of the council seats.

However, it has now been ruled that two seats in Kinson South have to be put to the public vote again due to an administration error and the 95% could be reduced. There is no foregone conclusion that any particular party will get the seats. Although, sadly in the run up to Christmas, turnout is likely to be poor.  In May it was slightly over 50% which was probably due to the General Election taking place at the same time. I will continue to canvas and support the Green Party candidates: Carla Gregory-May and Geoffrey Darnton, who are both local residents, and encourage everyone with votes to use them.

Another issue that I believe we should be voting on is the planned merger of four councils into one single unitary authority. This joining together of Bournemouth, Christchurch, East Dorset and Poole into a so called Super Council will have a massive effect on our lives and will be for the long term. There are both advantages and disadvantages for the merger. In the long term there may be cost savings but people from the outskirts may not wish the authority to be based in Bournemouth, which has been suggested as the most likely place for it. I have not reached a decision as to whether I am in favour or not, but residents need to understand more about what it will actually mean for them and I am certain that a referendum should take place. The council leader suggested that an alliance between the Green Party and UKIP had been forged over this matter as we both asked the question, and on this matter I would work together with all those supporting the residents having a say in their future.

 Link to petition: https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/hold-a-referendum-on-the-proposed-south-east-dorset-super-council

Councillor Simon Bull can be contacted at simon.bull@bournemouth.gov.uk