Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Could the voting age in Nairn be lowered to 16?

That is the interesting prospect that was raised at the Suburban Community Council meeting last night when the idea of a single community council for Nairn was raised. Scottish community councils are not covered by the Representation of the People’s Act and thus have the freedom to lower the voting age to the said bodies. Those attending the meeting seemed to be wholly in favour of allowing Nairn’s youth a greater say in the affairs of their town.
Of course a single community council would have to be created first and it is to that end that a Public consultation meeting will be held on Thursday the 9th of April at 7p.m. in Nairn’s community centre. Soon the population in Nairn will be asked to respond in a ballot paper that will be available in the Nairnshire and at other locations in the town. Members of the public will be asked the question ‘Do you wish to continue with the status quo for community councils in Nairn or do you want a single community council for Nairn.’ This ballot will be an expression of popular view and the proponents of a single council hope for a decisive enough expression of the public’s will to decide the question once and for all.
John MacKie told the public that he was hoping for a good turnout at the meeting and also a response to the ballot paper. Members of the public can also make representations via letter or e-mail to Louise Clark at the Courthouse if they wish to see a single council for Nairn.
It is interesting to note that the community council in Tain elect the Provost, now wouldn't that be a good idea in Nairn? Why should the four Highland Councillors decide who wears the chain, if there was a Royal Burgh Community Council of 15-20 members wouldn't that make the decision more reflective of the public will too?
We gurn enough about the state of democracy in Nairn don’t we, now’s our chance to do something about it. Get yourself along to the Community Centre on the 9th April and let your feelings be known.

More news from the Suburban Council later this morning.

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