Polling Place Review

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Public Consultation

Review of Polling Districts and Polling Places

 

INTRODUCTION

 

Following each electoral event, the Returning Officer for the North Ayrshire Voting Area reviews all comments received from Electors, Candidates, Agents, Election staff and special interest groups and, where necessary, recommendations are made to North Ayrshire Council to change Polling Districts and Polling Places.

 

The Returning Officer is, however, required to undertake a more formal review of Polling Districts and Polling Places in the North Ayrshire voting every five years.  The Returning Officer has confirmed that the next formal review will commence on Monday 1 October 2018.

 

REVIEW TIMETABLE AND FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

 

The Returning Officer is obliged to report any proposed changes and seek agreement from North Ayrshire Council.   The timetable for the review is therefore outlined below:

 

Notice of Review Published on Council Website and via Social Media Channels

 

Monday 1 October 2018

Notice of Review Published in Local Press

Week commencing Monday 1 October 2018

 

Public Consultation Opens

Monday 1 October 2018

 

Public Consultation Closes

Friday 23 November 2018

 

Returning Officer considers feedback from Public Consultation

 

November – May 2019

Returning Officer reports proposed changes and seeks approval from North Ayrshire Council

 

May 2019

Publication of Electoral Register

Scheduled publication – December 2019

 

Revised Polling Arrangements come in to force

First electoral event following Council approval and publication of Electoral Register.

 

The Returning Officer’s proposals are detailed below.  You can find out more about Polling Districts, Polling Places and this review by reading our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).

 

RETURNING OFFICER’S PROPOSALS

 

The Returning Officer is NOT currently proposing any changes to Polling Districts as part of this review. 

 

The Returning Officer is, however, proposing changes to some Polling Places.  This is due to some buildings currently utilised as Polling Places no longer being available.  The Returning Officer is also keen that, as far as possible, schools should remain open on Polling Day so as not to disrupt education provision. However, this may not always be possible due to a lack of alternative buildings in the immediate vicinity or due to the size and layout of a particular school.

The following table provides a summary of proposed changes by Ward.

 

Ward 1 Irvine West

 

No changes proposed.

 

 

 

Ward 2 Irvine East

 

No changes proposed.

 

 

 

Ward 3 Kilwinning

 

No changes proposed.

 

 

 

Ward 4 Stevenston

 

No changes proposed.

 

 

 

Ward 5 Ardrossan and Arran

 

1 proposed changed. (Assessment)

 

 

 

Ward 6: Dalry and West Kibride

 

No changes proposed.

 

 

 

Ward 7: Kilbirnie and Beith

 

1 proposed change. (Assessment)

 

 

 

Ward 8: North Coast and Cumbraes

 

1 proposed change. (Assessment)

 

 

 

Ward 9: Saltcoats

 

1 proposed change. (Assessment)

 

 

 

Ward 10: Irvine South

 

1 proposed change. (Assessment)

 

Full details of the Returning Officer’s proposals are provided in the attached table of proposals.

 

In considering the suitability of potential premises to be used for Polling purposes, guidance issued by The Electoral Commission has been used.   The evaluation checklist for each proposed new Polling Place has been published.  Polling Places must be accessible for voters with disabilities and should either have either level access, a permanent ramped access or be capable of having a temporary ramp installed. 

 

Polling Places also require to have adequate internal and external lighting.  They should have sufficient space to display guidance notices and for a wheelchair to be able to turn around.  All of our Polling Stations already have both high and low level polling booths.  It is preferable if there is space for designed vehicle parking for disabled people.   The premises also require to have kitchen and toilet facilities for staff on duty on Polling Day.  The premises need to be available, usually exclusively, on Polling Day.

 

NEXT SCHEDULED POLL

 

The next scheduled Polls will take place on:

 

Thursday 6 May 2021 Scottish Parliamentary Election

Thursday 5 May 2022 UK Parliamentary Election

 

NOTE: By-elections may occur at any time and the Poll usually takes place within three months of the date of the vacancy occurring.

 

APPEALS AGAINST THE DECISION OF NORTH AYRSHIRE COUNCIL

 

Following approval of the new Polling Arrangements, an appeal can only be made on the grounds that the local authority’s review did not:

 

  • meet the reasonable requirements of electors in the constituency
  • take sufficient account of disabled access to polling places

RIGHT TO APPEAL

 

Following a review, certain persons have a right to appeal:

 

  • 30 or more electors in the constituency
  • a person who made representations under Schedule A1 to the Representation of the People Act 1983. This includes an elector in a constituency in the local authority’s area who previously made representations to the local authority
  • a person who is not an elector in a constituency in the authority’s area but who The Electoral Commission thinks has either sufficient interest in disabled access to Polling Places in the area or particular expertise in disabled access to premises and facilities

Appeals should be made directly to The Electoral Commission.

 

If you are one of the persons mentioned above and would like to make an appeal which falls within one or both the grounds mentioned above, you can send your appeal to:

 

Legal Counsel
The Electoral Commission
3 Bunhill Row
London EC1Y 8YZ
Tel: 020 7271 0500
Email: appeals@electoralcommission.org.uk

 

On the outcome of an appeal, The Electoral Commission may:

 

  • direct the local authority to make any alterations to the Polling Places designated by the review
  • make alterations themselves, if the authority fails to make the alterations within two months of the direction being given

FURTHER INFORMATION

 

For further information on this review please contact the North Ayrshire Council Election Team on (01294) 324113 or 324133 or by email: elections@north-ayrshire.gov.uk