RESIDENTS in the Wee County will soon find it easier to influence council policy once a revision of the existing framework is implemented.

At a full council meeting last Thursday, December 20, elected members unanimously agreed to alter the way Clackmannanshire Council handles petitions from individuals and businesses.

The review looked to streamline the process, cuts down on the number of signatories required and the local authority will investigate options to implement an online system, following a Labour motion earlier this year.

Originally, the review was initiated after a motion from Labour leader Cllr Dave Clark was agreed late-October.

Research into the matter indicated that the council’s requirements for signatories, 1,000 for county-wide matters and 10 per cent of registered electors in a specific area before it would be considered, was “significantly higher than other areas”.

Officers therefore recommended the number is reduced to 250 and the percentage approach is discarded.

The document, tabled on the day, added: “The percentage approach currently introduces some unfairness as our smallest polling district is 142 people whereas the largest one has 3,974.”

Proposing the move, council leader Cllr Ellen Forson said there had been a few instances in the past where the current policy was not working.

The council is also looking to streamline the administration of petitions on its end.

Furthermore, the Citizen Space online system, which is currently used for consultations could potentially be used to allow electronic submissions.

However, the paper added: “We currently have a limited number of licences for the use of this system and any development of the system could not incur any additional licence or development costs as these are currently unbudgeted.”