Will Phil Skinner be made an Alderman?
Eligibility requirements for nomination are that the councillor should have served for at least eight years (two terms), not necessarily consecutively.
Nominees then need the approval of a two thirds vote from the full council.
The draft Verita report describes the nomination process within EDDC as relatively informal:
The CEO described the steps that were normally involved. He wrote:
“The Council’s convention has been that Group leaders and/or other interested Members have put forward suggestions to the Democratic Services Manager (on behalf of the CEO) as to who could be nominated for conferment of the title of Honorary Alderman.”
“Once a Group Leader or councillor nominating an individual for the title has provided information to support their nomination, a report of all the nominations received with the evidence as to why the title should be conferred is collated and sent to all Group leaders for consideration. They will discuss all of the nominations and then convey their respective views about whether the title should be conferred or not at this point in order to reach collective agreement and the nominees are then contacted.”
Where does that leave independents, especially those who dare to hold the council to account?
Phil Skinner is just one of more than a dozen long standing councillors who have stood down or failed to get re-elected.
In December 2019 Conservative ex-councillor John Humphreys, was one of 11 ex-councillors to be awarded the honorary title of “Alderman”.
Following John Humphreys’ conviction for historic rape this honour was withdrawn from him in September 2021.
Owl thinks that it is high time for this council to rethink the whole process, now that it has become debased to the detriment of genuinely deserving individuals. Shouldn’t it be reserved for exceptional service to the community; rather than just long service by itself or some sort of consolation prize for political appointees who have no longer been selected as a candidate by their party?