Decision Maker: Council, Civic Affairs Committee
Decision status: Recommendations approved
Is Key decision?: No
Is subject to call in?: No
The Electoral Services Manager presented this report, which provided the Committee with the results of the statutory review of the Council’s polling districts and polling places and asked the Committee to recommend to Council that the existing polling arrangements be retained.
The Electoral Services Manager explained that there had only been two responses received as a result of the consultation. The concerns of Camsight related to the actual voting process and could only be addressed nationally. Waterbeach Parish Council had expressed concerns over parking, but as their polling station was located centrally, most voters walked to it.
It was noted that Cambourne had three polling stations within the one building. In response to concerns regarding accessibility for visual impaired voters, the Electoral Services Manager stated that he would review the arrangements for Cambourne, to ensure that all voters could be easily directed to the correct polling station.
In response to questioning, the Electoral Services Manager explained that the only polling station which was not wheelchair accessible was in Conington, but residents expressed a preference of continuing to vote there. He explained that if necessary the presiding officer could take a ballot paper to a voter who was unable to access the local polling station.
The Electoral Services Manager explained that the Council might need to seek alternative venues at short notice. For example, in the event of a General Election in December, many venues might be booked for Christmas related events. It was also noted that the polling station for the polling district of Impington South would have to be moved in the future, as the Meadows Community Centre was due to be developed for housing. Councillor Martin Cahn stated that the rebuilt community centre would be within the City’s boundary. The Electoral Services Manager said that officers would evaluate the alternatives and present them to the Committee. The Council used caravans as temporary polling stations. These had proper awnings, which would provide shelter for voters in the event of inclement weather.
Displaying polling places on the website
The Electoral Services Manager agreed to investigate the possibility of displaying the list of polling stations on the website, providing there was no objection from any residents to the publicising of their home address.
RECOMMENDED TO COUNCIL that current schedule of polling districts and polling places be retained with no changes.
Publication date: 22/11/2019
Date of decision: 29/10/2019
Decided at meeting: 29/10/2019 - Civic Affairs Committee