Waf­fle, it’s un­ver­sa­tile

The Wokingham Paper - - VIEWPOINTS -

IN THE new nor­mal, coun­cil meet­ings are be­ing held all over the shop. So rather than Thurs­day, this week’s full coun­cil meet­ing took place, over the in­ter­net, on Mon­day. And rather than tak­ing ad­van­tage of tech­nol­ogy and start­ing ear­lier as coun­cil­lors were at home with no com­mute, it started at its usual time of 7.30pm. This is a shame as the agenda in­cluded sev­eral mo­tions brought for de­bate at pre­vi­ous meet­ings, but fil­i­bus­tered out. So it should come as lit­tle sur­prise that on Mon­day they­were fil­i­bus­tered out once again. And it is dis­ap­point­ing that when this con­stant faffing was raised by a res­i­dent – both Lib Dems and Con­ser­va­tives asked ques­tions to make their own party look good – the re­sponse was ‘not my prob­lem’. It is an af­front to our democ­racy that the coun­cil chamber, even in this vir­tual ba­sis, should be pre­vented from proper de­bate. It is a shame that par­ties are whipped to vote along lines rather than con­sciences. And it is a disas­ter that mo­tions are stuck in the eter­nal quag­mire of time. Some­thing needs to be done to make our coun­cil meet­ings run more flu­idly, even if it means hold­ing them over two con­sec­u­tive evenings. We can’t go on like this.

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