Councillors voting in an online meeting

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Bosses at Lichfield District Council have been left red-faced after admitting a vote on plans to redevelop Lichfield city centre was counted incorrectly.

A debate over the future of the local authority’s masterplan took place online last night (9th June).

But despite announcing in the meeting that an overview and scrutiny committee had opted against backing the document, council chiefs now say a review of video from the meeting has shown it was actually backed by six votes to five.

Christie Tims, monitoring officer for Lichfield District Council, said “technical issues” were to blame for a show of hands not being counted correctly.

“A vote took place to show whether committee members endorsed the Lichfield city centre masterplan.

“Unfortunately, due to technical issues, the vote was announced inaccurately.

“As monitoring officer, I have reviewed the recording of the meeting, and I can confirm that six members voted in favour of endorsing the plan and five voted against it, rather than four voting in favour and five against as was announced at the meeting.

“The minutes from the meeting will reflect this true result and will need to be signed as a correct record when the committee meets again.”

Christie Tims, Lichfield District Council

Click below to see the disputed vote count taking place:

The council has moved meetings online during the coronavirus crisis.

“We are now reviewing the process of how we hold remote meeting votes, to make sure there is no confusion while remaining transparent to viewers.

“We will be updating our guidance and procedures and working with members to make sure they understand the changes.”

Christie Tims, Lichfield District Council

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11 Comments

  1. I agree Arthur Mullaed, I would like to know if any of the councillors are wheelchair users, as I am , and with present rules cutting corners by sticking to the outdated size for wheelchair access and disabled loos, is this just going to be another scheme that excludes the disabled wheelchair user. There are three public disabled loos in Lichfield, 1 a wheelchair cannot use, another one, is only usable if you have a carer with you, and the other one is a changing places toilet which is great but its on the outskirts of town,! Please consult a group of people with different disabilities before the big go ahead. We already exclude wheelchair users from so many of the buildings in Lichfield due to high steps, small door ways, and cramped stores. Lets not keep the tradition going when a new development gets the go ahead, if it gets the go ahead.

  2. Take away whether you agree or disagree on what they were voting for.
    Why the confusion with a count of a very small number of councillors voting.
    For a lot of us who have had to now use Zoom or other providers has been an opportunity to continue our work or family life, there are challenges that come with it.
    Internet signal as we know can fluctuate
    Why not use the reactions button or poll or even the chat facility as well as hands up.
    Why wasn’t the officers attending the meeting taking note of whose voting to support Cllr Cox.

  3. I understand that we’re all faced with practical difficulties, as were unable to meet face to face but, really?? I mean, really??

    Just as well the Friarsgate money burning episode happened when it did – can you imagine the even bigger mess if it happened now?!

    This really doesn’t inspire confidence, does it?

    The mind boggles….

  4. Was there a challenge to the vote? How can we be sure it even represents reality now? Have vested interests changed the result? A full account from the chairman and affidavits from councillors as to how they voted should be published.
    We are considering the future of the city here along with very large expenditure. Already there has been resignations. Just what is the state of our council, and what trust can we have in their decisions? Clearly the way they are operating voting decisions is not fit for practice…. or democracy!

  5. I absolutely disagree with moving the market from its traditional location in Market Square!
    Please leave Lichfield alone. Have you learned nothing from the Friarsgate fiasco?

  6. All you need to do is scan through the video to watch the vote. It was right to be challenged – the count was clearly dodgy as councillors were putting their hands up and down all over the place. It makes you wonder if any votes taken this way have been accurate. As Burntwood Bloke suggests, they really need to use a suitable method.

  7. Can someone in the so called council explain why all the new and expensive crossings in Lichfield have no sirens? Blind people be damned is it?
    I can list them happily, street by street.
    Worse still half of them have failing green men so even those of us with eyesight can’t really tell when to cross.

    Did sense ever exist?

    Please please reply

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