Last month I outlined the proposals from the Elections Review Group on the composition and electorate of the General Synod: part 1 and part 2. The Business Committee brought these to Synod for debate as the last items of business (apart from farewells) at Synod yesterday morning.
The proposals in part 1 were largely uncontroversial, and Synod agreed to send the draft legislation to a revision committee. But there was a lot of opposition to the proposal to abolish the university constituencies rather than reform them (and the way in which the review group had made its decision), and Synod passed this following motion, proposed by Professor Richard Burridge:
That this Synod request that the Steering Committee appointed under SO 49 to be in charge of the draft legislation arising from GS 1901 undertake full consultation with the University proctors regarding the proposals relating to the University constituencies in GS 1901, GS 1902 and GS 1904 and bring forward further proposals for consideration by the Revision Committee for the reform of those constituencies, based on accurate information.
Synod then moved onto part 2, of which the main part is the possibility of a change in the electorate for the House of Laity. Although the Business Committee supported replacing the lay members of deanery synods by an electoral college, they wanted to test the mind of Synod before producing any draft legislation. There is also a proposal to conduct elections online. But there was not time to complete the debate, and it was adjourned to a future group of sessions. Which group will be decided by the Business Committee.
The official summary of all Tuesday’s business is online, but strangely there is no mention of Professor Burridge’s motion.