Voters in English local elections could be entered into a "prize draw" in an effort to increase turnout at elections, says minister Hazel Blears.You’d really think that the last thing Labour wanted in the current circumstances was to encourage more people to turn up at the ballot box. Unless she’s dim enough to believe that they’d automatically vote Labour. Still, it provided the Opposition with a chance for some fun:
She told MPs proposals to give people more of a say in local services, such as letting councils offer "incentives" to encourage voter registration.
For the Conservatives, Eric Pickles suggested the "booby prize" would be a Labour controlled council.It wasn’t the daftest notion test-flown by Blears, though:
Others proposals include making councils pay more attention to petitions and transferring some council assets like swimming pools to neighbourhood groups.So, if some utter crackpot gets enough real (or fake!) signatures on his or her petition, the council must then host a full debate on the subject, regardless of it’s validity…?
And organisers of local petitions, often ignored by councils, will be given the opportunity of a full council debate on the issue if signatures amount to 5% of the local population.
David Icke, come on down!