Councillors could vote from the comfort of their armchair

Councillors will be excused from turning up at town hall meetings under Labour plans.

They will be allowed to debate and vote on vital decisions affecting local people while watching television at home or drinking in a pub.

The only limits would be that at least one councillor must be in the town hall chamber and others must be in 'audio contact', such as with a mobile phone or internet link.

Councillors not at meetings would still be able to claim their allowances, which average nearly £10,000 a year but can reach £60,000.

The scheme to allow 'remote attendance and voting' is in a consultation document from the Communities Department run by Hazel Blears.

It will be included in a new law this autumn and aims 'to help overcome the barriers of time, circumstance and distance' that may stop councillors from attending meetings...

...Ministers want to increase election turnouts and are considering an idea from California to give out free doughnuts to electors as well as offering prizes worth up to £1,000 to those who go to polling stations.

REST HERE
Tarn Lass

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