Town Council Planning Meeting

Report
The Town Council
Planning Meeting
Lesson objectives
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To understand what is meant by local government
To consider and prioritise problems faced by local
government
To practise skills of communication and
negotiation
To practise conflict resolution
Introduction
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The laws of Britain are passed by Members
of Parliament (MPs) who vote in the House
of Commons in London.
Councillors who work for local councils,
not Members of Parliament, take many of the
decisions that affect our day-to-day lives and
the area we live.
This form of government is known as local
government.
Which department?
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Education
Transport planning
Passenger transport
Highways
Fire service
Social services
Libraries
Waste disposal
Housing
Planning applications
Leisure and recreation
Waste collection
Environmental health
Revenue collection
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
I want my son Peter to go attend my
local school.
The speed limit in my road should be
reduced to 20 mph.
I don’t agree with a landfill site being
built near my home.
I want to adopt children
I have a shed with an asbestos roof.
How do I get rid of it?
My library doesn’t have enough non
fiction books
I have heard that you are planning to
build a traffic island outside my house
and I don’t want one!
My bins haven’t been emptied for three
weeks
How do you become a
councillor?
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There are about 21,000 councillors in
England and Wales.
Each one is elected to represent one small
geographical area known as a ward.
In cities like Birmingham there are three
councillors for each ward.
Councillors have to be over 21 years of age
and be on the electoral roll for the ward that
they are standing in.
Which department?
9.
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Education
Transport planning
Passenger transport
Highways
Fire service
Social services
Libraries
Waste disposal
Housing
Planning applications
Leisure and recreation
Waste collection
Environmental health
Revenue collection
10.
11.
12.
13.
14.
15.
16.
I want to build an extension onto my house.
Is it true that you are planning to close our
beautiful Victorian swimming baths?
I think that my house should be in a lower
category when you collect my council tax.
I am a single mother and my child and I
need somewhere to live.
I waited half an hour for a bus the other day
and I was late for work.
I’ve noticed that there are big drums of
chemicals in the garden of an abandoned
house near me.
There should be more cycle routes in our
area because the roads are not safe for
cyclists.
There are rats constantly coming out of my
next-door neighbour’s garden.
Voting in council elections
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You have to over 18 to vote in local elections and
also you have to be on the electoral roll for the ward.
Big councils like Birmingham have local elections
every year and each time a third of the seats are
contested.
The candidates usually come from the three main
parties but other smaller parties and independents
also stand for election.
Elections are usually held on the first Thursday in
May.
Polling day
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Normally people go to vote in a polling station,
which has been set up in a school, or other public
building.
They give their name to an official, who ticks it off a
list of eligible voters. They are given a ballot paper
with the names of all the candidates on it and vote
by putting an X next to the name of the person they
want.
They then put the ballot paper into the ballot box,
without anyone seeing who they have voted for.
The person with the highest number of votes wins.
This is known as ‘first passed the post’ voting.
The Town Council Planning
meeting
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Your table is the executive committee for
Wheelhurst Town Council.
I want you to look at the 10 problems and
choose what you think are the five most
important problems for Wheelhurst.
You must all agree on these five problems.
Problems to consider
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
Gangs of youths are hanging around
the take-away shop in the High
Street. Should high level noise
devices be fitted to the shops so that
they move away?
There are too few children in
Bankley Primary and Woodview
Primary. Should we close one of the
schools down?
The council houses in Pond Lane
need to be repainted both inside and
out, as it is more than ten years
since they were last done. Should
we go ahead with it?
There were three road accidents,
one of which was fatal, along the
Bashford Road last month. Should
we install speed cameras?
The council-run home for the elderly
is in need of refurbishment. Should
we go ahead with this?
6.
7.
8.
9.
10.
We currently recycle paper.
Should we extend this scheme to
include glass, plastic, cans and
garden waste?
There is a rise in the birth rate in
the south of the town. Should we
build a new nursery school?
The local probation service has
asked permission to build a hostel
in Fingley Road for people who
have come out of prison to stay.
Should we give permission for this
to be built?
The residents of Arby Lane have
asked for trees to be planted on
along the road. Should we do
this?
Swimming instruction in schools is
expensive. Should we restrict it to
just Years 6 and 7?
Your choices
Group 1
Group 2
Group 3
Group 4
Group 5
Group 6
Optional extra
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Now I want you to join with another table and
repeat the exercise agreeing on just five
problems.
Your choices
Group1
Group 2
Group 3

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