Will councillors vote to gag a debate on whether Girtrell Court decision is made in public?
In a surprise twist, the debate on a notice of motion on Girtrell Court has become like the thought experiment Schrödinger’s cat.
The reason the debate might not be heard is because of Standing Order 17(1) in Wirral Council’s constitution (see page 162:
(1) No decision of the Council (including a decision taken by a committee or panel under delegated powers) may be reconsidered by the Council on a notice of motion within six months of the date of the earlier decision unless the notice of motion (under Standing Order 7) is signed by 17 members of the Council. If that motion is rejected by the Council neither it nor one to the same effect can be considered by the Council for six months.
However standing order 17, doesn’t apply to debates on large petitions, which are dealt with according to Wirral Council’s petitions scheme.
In the case of a petition of at the time of writing 6,593 signatures the petition scheme states “Petitions that must be considered by the Council – these must be signed by at least 3,000 people who live in the Borough”.
So in order for there to be a debate on Girtrell Court tonight either:
(a) Councillors could decide to suspend standing order 17 to allow the debate on Girtrell Court to go ahead, or
(b) Bernard Halley submits his large petition which triggers a fifteen minute debate as debates on petitions aren’t subject to standing order 17 or
(c) Councillor Blakeley finds fifteen other councillors to sign his notice of motion and therefore the debate goes ahead.
Tonight’s public meeting of Wirral Council will start at 6.00pm in the Council Chamber at Wallasey Town Hall, Brighton Street, Seacombe, CH44 8ED.
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