Who do we vote for? Knowledge is power.

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED APR 28, 2013

So who do we vote for if we want to reward those councillors who have opposed the great sale of Cornwall and punish those who collude in it? The first thing we need to do is educate ourselves and find out what they said and did about key issues over the past four years. Sadly, that’s by no means as easy as it sounds.

While all votes in Parliament have been recorded and made public since the 1700s, for some curious reason local councils don’t have to tell us which way those councillors we vote for actually vote. Councillors can ask for a recorded vote and, if a quarter present agree, it happens. Yet this is rare and important votes such as those on the housing target of the Local Plan in February 2013 went unrecorded. Although they are supposed to ‘represent’ us we therefore have no way of knowing exactly how our representatives are ‘representing’ us!

In this undemocratic farce, we have to make the most of those few recorded votes, of names of proposers and seconders of resolutions, of webcasts of debates and statements in the press. This takes some research but is what this spreadsheet is based on. It provides the stance on some key issues of those sitting councillors seeking re-election. In the absence of a properly open, accountable, representative democracy in Cornwall, it’s the best I can do at present. Doubtless, it includes some errors. So if you spot any let me know – and apologies in advance for any such mistakes.

What your councillors voted for

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