SHBC elections on 2nd May to be more inclusive

The borough council has acknowledged that it must respond to trends in society.  It will therefore facilitate diversity in the results of the forthcoming borough elections.  This should overcome the present undesirable dominance of the council by a single political party.

Until now, candidates for election have not had any way of showing their LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer) status.  As a result, electors have been unable to target their votes towards any particular gender orientation.  However, the council will change the situation in time for the borough elections next month.

The general format of ballot papers used in local elections is defined by the Electoral Commission.  However, there is no restriction on the use of colour.  The borough council therefore intends that the name of each candidate shall be printed over the rainbow colour which best reflects their sexual orientation.  The background colour for candidates who do not wish to state their position on the gender spectrum shall be grey.

Historically, ballot papers have included the logo of a candidate’s political affiliation, if any.  This practice will be extended to indicate the appropriate LGBTQ flag.

A specimen ballot paper is shown below.

 

A serious rant!

We’ve already mentioned thatSurrey Heath Borough Council has formalised its commitment to reducing single use plastics (SUP) by signing an agreement alongside Surrey County Council and 10 Surrey boroughs and districts.

We have no objection to that, of course.  But we think it’s rather missing the point.  It really doesn’t matter how often a plastic item is used – just once, or umpteen times.  The important thing is that, when it reaches the end of its life, it’s disposed of carefully, so that it doesn’t end up polluting the environment.

So, the borough council – if it’s not just going along with the fashion to restrict SUP – needs to examine the disposal of ALL plastic in the borough, and make sure that it’s managed properly.  Which includes scrutinising the way the contents of our green bins are treated.  If they simply end up as a bale on a windy derelict airfield somewhere (we’re not suggesting that this actually happens), or if they’re shipped to a country that can’t really cope with them, then the council may be obeying the letter of its commitment, but it won’t be obeying the spirit.

What chance is there that the council will carry out, and publish, an audit of what happens to our domestic waste, particularly what goes into the green bin?

A roofed garden….

Today’s photo was taken inside Next on the A30, looking down on its empty garden area.  The reason for showing it?  It’s because a planning application has been submitted for: “Alterations to external elevations to enclose garden centre with increase in height of the walls and installation of flat roof over.”

We can’t see any cause for concern.  We reckon that the external area hasn’t earned its keep for quite a while.