- Council and democracy
This petition is now closed, as its deadline has passed.
We the undersigned petition Woking Borough Council to take action to bring back overnight street lighting.
Petition update from the council, 09 August 2017At its meeting on 20 July 2017, the Council considered the Petition. An extract from the minute of that meeting is set out below;
The Council had before it a report on a petition seeking action by the Borough Council to ensure that overnight street lighting across the Borough was reinstated following the County Council’s decision to switch off street lighting after midnight each night on smaller roads in Surrey. The decision had been reached as part of the County Council’s measures to achieve significant savings in the current and future years. The petition had been signed by 462 individuals and was presented at the meeting. The Mayor welcomed Fiona Syrett, representative for the petitioners.
The petitioner advised that she had been contacted by many residents concerned over safety as a result of the new arrangements, including a number of shift workers. Reference was made to the benefits of overnight street lighting and the Council was asked to provide funding to ensure, at the very least, that a few lights along every street remained on overnight. The Members of the Council were given the opportunity to ask questions of the petitioner before moving to the debate.
The report before the Council was introduced by Councillor Kemp. It was noted that the County Council had agreed that overnight street lighting could be reinstated in the Borough if the Borough Council chose to enter into a five year funding agreement which would cost the Borough between £150,000 and £200,000. In view if the nature of the request, the Petition had also been presented to a recent meeting of the Woking Joint Committee, the discussions of which were summarised in the report now before the Council. In terms of safety, the Council was advised that the Police had been consulted on the proposals and had been asked to identify any areas which should be excluded from the scheme.
The matter was debated in full by the Members of the Council, with concerns voiced that the change would lead to a significant increase in crime in the area. However, a number of Councillors reported that residents had raised little or no concern on the new arrangements and drew attention to the significant benefit the scheme would have for wildlife and the reduction of light pollution. It was further added that residents with particular concerns over anti social behaviour could raise them directly with the Police who were able to request an exception to Surrey County Council.
In view of the debate, the proposal for the Council to provide funding to Surrey County Council in order to reinstate overnight street lighting was put to a vote. In accordance with Standing Order 10.8 the names of Members voting for and against the recommendation were recorded.
In favour:Councillors M Ali, T Aziz, J E Bond, A J Boote and M I Raja.
TOTAL in favour – 5
Against:Councillors Mrs H J Addison, A Azad, A-M Barker, D J Bittleston,G G Chrystie, K M Davis, I Eastwood, W P Forster, D Harlow,K Howard, D E Hughes, Mrs B A Hunwicks, S Hussain, I Johnson,C S Kemp, J Kingsbury, R Mohammed, L M N Morales, A E Murray,M Pengelly, C Rana, and M A Whitehand.
TOTAL against – 22
The recommendation was therefore lost by 5 votes to 22 votes.The Mayor thanked Fiona for her presentation.
(i)the petition be noted; and
(ii)no further action be taken by Woking Borough Council in respect of the request to reinstate overnight street lighting.