Council confuses residents over voter registration

Mixed messages from the council

Mixed messages from the council

B&NES Council has caused a stir among residents by sending a contradictory letter about recent changes to the voter registration system.

In line with other councils, B&NES has written to everyone on its register informing them that for the most part, they are automatically re-registered under the new system and therefore do not need to take any further action. The standard letter also explains the difference between the electoral register and the open register which can be purchased by companies and used for marketing purposes. Anyone not wishing to appear on the open register has to ask for their details to be removed.

However, in the very next paragraph, B&NES Council’s Electoral Registration Officer informs residents; “Your details will not be on the the open register. ┬áTo be added to the open register please call 01225 477333 or e-mail optout@bathnes.gov.uk”

Residents of South Gloucestershire meanwhile have been sent letters correctly informing them that their details appear on both registers and supplying a freephone number and security code to use if they wish to be removed from the open register.