North Somerset Council’s Executive on 24th October, now a week ago (sorry your editor was away for a few days – but in touch), decided in public that Claverham Neighbourhood Plan will proceed to referendum according with the Examiners directions.
North Somerset Council’s Executive on 24 October 2017 agreed that the Claverham Neighbourhood Plan, with the Examiners modifications, can now be passed to referendum. It is the duty of North Somerset Council to organise the referendum and the date will be formally published in due course. It is likely to be Thursday 18 January 2018. The referendum will take place within the Claverham Neighbourhood Plan area.
This means the 56 working day period (which is the maximum a local authority should use unless agreed with Yatton Parish Council) starts on 5th November!
The programme for the referendum which is so important to Claverham in confirming its Neighbourhood Plan is most likely to be January 18th 2018.
We at Claverham Future will be doing all we can to expedite the process.
In accordance with the Examiner’s Report proposals the Plan is to be redrafted in certain parts. You have our assurance that revisions to the document have already been drafted and that, apart from any remaining edits which we expect to be minor, the document is ready.
As explained by North Somerset there are a number of protocols to be observed, which if you are wondering “why so long?” are:
a) The register of electors is required in law to be republished on 1 December 2017 and all electoral numbers change with effect from that date. Polling cards in respect of a Neighbourhood Planning Referendum are issued as soon as possible after publication of the Notice of Referendum but this is not possible prior to 1 December for the above reason. Electors are reliant on polling cards to be aware of the referendum date and of the deadlines for postal and proxy applications.
b) The statutory timetable for a Neighbourhood Planning Referendum requires a period of 25 days excluding Saturdays, Sundays, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and bank holidays between publication of the Notice of Referendum and the date of the poll. Thus publication of the Notice of Referendum on Monday 4 December would enable the poll to proceed on Thursday 11 January 2018. However this requires postal votes to be issued over the Christmas/New Year period and experience is that doing so over such periods causes problems. For this reason it is intended that the poll will proceed on Thursday 18 January.