Bristol City Council Bans Public Questions at Full Council

Bristol City Council Bans Public Questions:

Bristol City Council blocked part of Public Forum at its Full Council meeting this week, citing ‘parliamentary pre-election protocol’ in the run up to the December General Election.

Public statements were allowed to be heard as usual, but when it came to public questions, Lord Mayor of Bristol Jos Clark, refused to allow them to be heard.

There were calls from the public gallery for Clark’s resignation.


Bristol City Council sent the following information to members of the public who had submitted statements and questions:

‘Due to the notification of the General Election, the Council is now subject to a parliamentary pre-election protocol For this meeting the Lord Mayor has put in place a revised procedure for supporting Public Forum Questions.

· Questions can be about any matter the Council is responsible for or which directly affect the city.
· Members of the public are entitled to submit up to 2 written questions
· No verbal response will be provided at the meeting
· Written responses to questions will be provided within 10 working days of the meeting.
· No supplementary questions will be permitted.

This was challenged by some of the members of public in attendance one of whom stood up and said: “You’re denying members of the public their democratic right to ask questions and to hold you accountable. There’s no rules or regulations locally or nationally to prevent the asking of questions and there’s no precedent. This didn’t happen in 2015 or 2017.”

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