Anyone who lives, works or studies in the council’s area may organise or sign a petition. This includes anyone under the age of 18. Full details of the Petition Scheme is set out in the Constitution under the procedure rules. If you are thinking about organising a petition please contact the Democratic Services Team who can provide you with help and advice.
A petition must include a clear and concise statement covering the subject of the petition, state what lawful action the petitioners wish the council to take, be signed by at least 20 people supporting the petition, include the name, address and signature of any person supporting the petition and contact details of the petition organiser.
Petitions can be submitted in paper format or through an e-petition portal. Petitions can also be presented to the meeting of Full Council if it meets the threshold. Where the threshold is met the petition organiser should contact democratic services at least 10 working days before the Full Council meeting. The council’s response will depend on the number of people who have signed the petition and the table below sets out that threshold :
|Number of signatories||Responses|
|20 - 49||Response from relevant Director or Service Head|
|50 - 4,999||Responses from relevant Executive Councillor|
|5000+||Referred for debate at a meeting of Full Council|
If the petition has enough signatures to trigger a debate at Full Council then the petition organiser will be informed when and where the meeting will take place. The council will try to consider the petition at its next meeting, although sometimes this may not be possible and consideration will then take place at the following meeting.
The petition organiser or a person representing the petition organiser will have three minutes to present the petition at the Full Council meeting. The petition will be debated by councillors unless the petition is referred to another committee for consideration, in which case it will not be debated. Councillors may ask questions of the petition organiser and the petition organiser, or their representative, will have three minutes at the end of the debate to respond before the councillors take a vote on the matter.
Please refer to the council’s Petition Scheme in the Constitution for further details or contact a member of the Democratic Services Team for help and advice.