Author Topic: Doncaster elects an English Democrat for Mayor  (Read 5376 times)

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Offline Alligator

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Doncaster elects an English Democrat for Mayor
« on: June 05, 2009, 10:11:02 PM »
With all the noise of Gordon's problems today, this is an interesting result.

There is a mood in the country for democratic reform in the UK and the issue of the West Lothian question caused by Scottish devolution and a devolved parliament for England is a part of that debate.

I think it will be interesting to see what sort of job this guy does.

It seems that the turnout in Doncaster is dramatically down on 2005, so I guess the linking of elections, though cost effective, can have an adverse impact on the turnout if you lump the higher profile yet 'less interesting' votes in with more local votes.  It also looks like there may have been some prior political manouvres to help this along.  There's a link to that story within the article on the beeb's website.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/south_yorkshire/8084538.stm

Quote
English Democrat wins mayor vote
   

Alliance targets town mayor post

An English Democrats candidate has been elected the new mayor of Doncaster.

Earlier this year it was disclosed that serious case reviews were under way into the deaths of seven children known to the social services in the town.

Independent Mayor Martin Winter decided not to run for re-election amid criticism of his handling of the issue.

Peter Davies won the second round of counting to be elected mayor. The Labour and Conservative candidates were knocked out of the contest earlier.

Mr Davies was elected with 25,344 votes, less than 400 more than his closest rival, independent candidate Michael Maye.

He said his victory marked "a new day for Doncaster" and promised "better times" for the town's residents in the future.

Mr Davies and Mr Maye gained the most first preference votes.

They progressed to the second round after no mayoral hopeful managed to win 50% of the vote.

All other candidates, including members of the Labour party, the Conservatives and the British National Party, were eliminated from the vote after the first round.

Labour's Sandra Holland narrowly missed her place in the second round.

Figures from the Doncaster election put turnout at 34.59%. In 2005, the turnout was 50.39%



Offline Steve Wakefield

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Re: Doncaster elects an English Democrat for Mayor
« Reply #1 on: June 24, 2009, 08:45:07 AM »
He believes that Doncaster  can do without two thirds of its councillors. He is proposing to reduce Doncaster's number of councillors to 21, Doncaster only has a population of 68,000. That is quite a high ratio of 63 councillors to 68,000 residents.

I think I may be watching developments in Doncaster with interest from now on it looks interesting and the Mayor's first Month is still not over. :-\

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Offline Alligator

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Re: Doncaster elects an English Democrat for Mayor
« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2009, 12:00:57 PM »
I agree Steve, 63 councillors to 68000 people would equate to one councillor for every 1079 people.  That would work out as being one councillor for every couple of streets.  However I would question the figure of 68000 as, although I haven't checked, I thought Doncaster was larger than that.  

The vote results, show that Peter Davies got 25,344, which was less than 400 more than his rival, which suggests that there were another 25,000 votes cast.  Even with 2 rounds of counting, which may mean that some voters were counted twice once their preferred candidate dropped out, it suggests that there were around 50,000 individual votes cast.  With a turn out of 35%, it suggests that the population eligible to vote is around 140,000.  Once you add in under 18s and those not on the electoral register the population figure will be even higher and so I would guess a population size of at least 250,000.

In any event it will be interesting to see whether he would actually propose this and if so how he would propose to carve up the town.  It should be noted that this isn't something that he has the power to do. However it doesn't mean it won't be discussed further.  I assume that achieving this will either involve fewer councillors per ward or fewer wards, it's most likely to involve both.  I'm sure that whatever he proposes will be controversial as one party of another will claim to be penalised by the boundary changes between wards.

Offline ford

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Re: Doncaster elects an English Democrat for Mayor
« Reply #3 on: June 24, 2009, 03:39:58 PM »
From wiki.

According to the 2001 census, the urban sub-area of Doncaster had a population of 67,977 — together with Bentley and Armthorpe it forms an urban area with a population of 127,851. The wider metropolitan borough has a population of around 286,866.[

Offline Steve Wakefield

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Re: Doncaster elects an English Democrat for Mayor
« Reply #4 on: June 24, 2009, 11:18:53 PM »
Ford

Thanks for that info very interesting 21 councillors to 280,000 people,  it looks like this new Mayor is a real mould breaker. Yes one...... me thinks is worth watching!  :coffee:
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Offline swindonlad

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Re: Doncaster elects an English Democrat for Mayor
« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2009, 07:21:17 PM »
electorate of doncaster 215,632 (from the doncaster mayor's result)

that's 1 councillor for every 10,268 electors

swindon
electorate 148,757 (from the euro result) or 2,521 electors per councillor
to get to the doncaster ratio, it would mean swindon would have 14.5 councillors

Offline Alligator

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Re: Doncaster elects an English Democrat for Mayor
« Reply #6 on: June 25, 2009, 08:27:28 PM »
to get to the doncaster ratio, it would mean swindon would have 14.5 councillors

I can think of a few that could already be that half a councillor.   ;)

Offline Justin Tomlinson

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Re: Doncaster elects an English Democrat for Mayor
« Reply #7 on: July 09, 2009, 10:33:17 AM »
It will be interesting to see how this all pans out.

He has a mandate to make the changes he is doing (he was open about them in the election and did win).  One potential concern is that the Government sets the targets to determine 'how good a Council is' and some of his changes fly in the face of the Government's aspirations, and therefore you would expect the Council to falter.

Council's should be free of most of the Government targets, allowing them to deliver what they have been elected to do.

Offline Geoff Reid

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Re: Doncaster elects an English Democrat for Mayor
« Reply #8 on: July 09, 2009, 02:43:12 PM »
 
One potential concern is that the Government sets the targets to determine 'how good a Council is' and some of his changes fly in the face of the Government's aspirations, and therefore you would expect the Council to falter.

Interesting indeed.

Isn't it true that local government largely 'self-certifies' itself within the current culture of targets chasing?

Isn't it also true that councils are actually writing their own summaries for inclusion in these reports?

I don't know whether to be tickled, mortified or embarrassed to read how excellent my council is, yet see it stuck firmly with a 2 star rating. Yes, I know the council was a mess before, but the current administration has had a controlling majority of arses on seats for how long?, 5 or 6 years?, yet despite all the good news being broadcast from the press office the council remains widely unpopular, some members remain arrogantly insular and a vastly higher number of voters remain utterly disengaged from it and the democratic process.

Given that democratically elected councils derive their 'power' by the votes lent to them by the electorate, I'm of the mind that many councils are already faltering democratically but don't realise it yet. How can any council claim to have a mandate from the electorate if less than 50% of the electorate voted?

Traditional party politics appears to have sailed itself merrily into the sargasso because it's been gazing into its own orifices for so long. With our 3 party system so utterly populated by people with the political equivalent of obsessive compulsive disorder, it is incapable of changing itself, yet without change it will continue to wither on the vine, and perhaps that's a good thing.

It will be fascinating to see what happens in Doncaster, if the new Mayor flies in the face of perceived political wisdom and succeeds where the usual suspects have failed, then what next?