Plan to halt election posters on council property
Telford & Wrekin Council’s returning officer is to consider stopping allowing political groups and candidates in an election from using council owned land or equipment to put up posters.
Returning officer Richard Partington is now seeking the views of politicians, potential candidates and the public in the borough over this issue before making taking any decision.
Many other councils do not allow such political election material on their land and the issue came to the fore in this summer’s European elections in the borough, when a number of election posters on street furniture were damaged or de-faced, often with offensive symbols or language.
He has now written to election agents, parish council and leaders of all political groups seeking their views.
Mr Partington said: “I don’t think this is a problem that we have faced here in Telford and Wrekin before and it is a great shame that it happened.
“We have had a protocol in place that permitted election posters on council owned assets and this generally worked well.
“However, during the European Elections we received complaints and the council incurred costs immediately taking down posters that had offensive symbols or language on them.
“We also had some complaints about the proliferation of signs and that some were not taken down until long after the 14 day “grace” period post-election.
“I want to hear the views of those involved in elections and local people over these proposals so that we can be clear before the elections in May 2015.”
Many other councils in the region have already stopped political parties and candidates using of council owned land or street furniture such as lamp posts for election purposes.
If anyone had any views on this issue, they can submit them to firstname.lastname@example.org or by writing to Electoral Services, Telford & Wrekin Council, Addenbrooke House, Ironmasters Way, Telford TF3 4NT by 14 November 2014.