2370 wasted hours

The final tally of Police and Crime Commissioners is

16 Conservative
13 Labour
11 Independent
1 Zero Tolerance Policing

The really noteworthy statistic is turnout. The best was in Northamptonshire with 20.0%, undoubtedly boosted by the Parliamentary by-election.

Here are the lowest:

11.6% Staffordshire
12.0% West Midlands
12.4% Merseyside
12.8% Essex
13.3% North Yorkshire
13.3% Thames Valley
13.3% West Yorkshire
13.6% Greater Manchester
13.7% Cheshire
14.0% Gwent

One polling station is reported as having no voters in all the fifteen hours it was open. I did about a hour and a half’s telling on Thursday evening and I saw less than ten voters in that time. Aside from the apathy, this was a costly exercise. Every polling station has two staff manning it. (I make that 2370 man-hours of polling station duty in the Borough of Southend-on-Sea alone.) There are notices printed, as well as ballot papers, and I presume a charge for using the premises where the polling station is hosted.

Democracy should not be limited by cost, but neither should it be made deliberately expensive. These PCC elections should have been run beside local elections either earlier this year, or next May.


One Response to 2370 wasted hours

  1. NGC says:

    Part of the problem was that the government delibrately avoided debate. having created a new role, they did not want to have to mange discussion about this role and subsequent discussion on law and order. Instead they simply wanted to fill the role with party hacks, just as they fill every other role. I honestly don’t think that the three main parties saw any real problem with running an election in such an undemocratic way.

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