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What will the council do when it receives my petition?

An acknowledgement will be sent to the petition organiser within five working days of receiving the petition.

An acknowledgement will be sent to the petition organiser within five working days ofreceiving the petition. Within 20 working days we will provide a written response to the petition organiser.

If the petition affects a particular area the county councillors covering that area will be informed that a petition has been received.

If the petition has enough signatures to trigger a Council debate, then the acknowledgment will confirm this and tell you when and where the meeting will take place.

If the petition applies to a planning or licensing application, is a statutory petition (for example requesting a referendum on having an elected mayor), or on a matter where there is already an existing right of appeal, such as a school admission appeal, other procedures apply.

If your petition is about something over which the Council has no direct control (for example the local railway or hospital) we will refer the petition to the relevant body and ask that they provide a response to you.


Full Council debates

If a petition contains more than 5,000 signatures it will be debated by the full Council. This means that the issue raised in the petition will be discussed at a meeting which all councillors can attend. The Council will endeavour to consider the petition at its next meeting, although on some occasions this may not be possible and consideration will then take place at the following meeting. Petitions must be received by Democratic Services at least 10 clear working days ahead of the meeting.

The petition organiser will be given five minutes to present the petition at the meeting and the petition will then be discussed by councillors for 15 minutes. This may be extended at the discretion of the Chair of Council up to a maximum of 30 minutes.

The options open to the Council are limited. The Council may simply decide to note the petition. Where the issue is one on which the Council executive is required to make the final decision, the Council will decide whether to make recommendations to inform that decision.

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