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Lincolnshire County Council calls for referendum on membership of the EU

Councillors at Lincolnshire County Council passed a motion calling for Prime Minister David Cameron to agree to a binding referendum on continued membership of the European Union.

The motion was proposed by Skegness councillor Mark Smith.

Coun Smith said: “Today’s EU is a world away from what the British People believed they were signing up for when we joined the “common market”.

“Only 27 per cent of today’s electorate were eligible to vote in the 1975 referendum. It is time to challenge the conventional wisdom on Europe.

“This is our country and its future should be ours to decide.

“It is right that Lincolnshire County Council supports the call for holding a National Referendum on our continued membership of the European Union, and to remove all doubts this should be sooner rather than later.”

As part of the motion the council also vowed to “write to the Prime Minister to advise him of this council’s position and to urge him during the year ahead to agree a binding timetable for a National Referendum on our membership of the EU so it can take place in 2014.”

Coun Kelly Smith of Lincoln Moorland seconded the motion.

She said: “It’s time that British voters had their say on the Europe issue. For too long a lack of transparency and a lack of clear, meaningful purpose has lead to a general feeling of mistrust and irrelevance.

“This leaves a void which is filled with extreme views on both sides of the argument, effectively hijacking the issue.

“Once the date for a referendum has been set, a properly informed debate can take place, and the people can decide. The sooner the better.”

The full motion reads:

On the 5th of June 1975 Harold Wilson fulfilled the pledge he made in the Labour Party’s October 1974 Manifesto when the United Kingdom went to the polls in its first National Referendum over our membership of the EEC, or Common Market as it was called then.

The turnout in the referendum was 65% and nationally the United Kingdom voted by a margin of 2 to 1 to remain within the EEC. In Lincolnshire 74.79 Supported continued membership compared to 25.3% who did not.

The European Question has since the 70’s caused deep distrust within our country, particularly as the UK, as a nett contributor to the EU budget seems to get a very poor deal from our membership of this elite federalist club. Our National political leaders over the decades have seen more and more powers removed from National governments into the hands of the European Commission. Our residents are upset and angry that they have no powers to stem the tide, or change laws imposed on our country, which to a part explains the distrust voters generally feel for all the mainstream political parties and why voter turnout continues to decline.

If you were 17 in 1975 you will be 53 now and you will have probably been a taxpayer for well in excess of 30 years. You have never had a chance to express your opinion on whether Europe is a good or bad thing from your perspective. National politics can only be improved by consulting with and trusting the British people to make the right decisions. What Harold Wilson said simply, and then did was to “give the British people the final say, which will be binding on the government, through the ballot box”.

It is now time for this Country and the residents of Lincolnshire to be given the opportunity through a national referendum to let their views on Europe be known to our Political leaders, across the spectrum.

The Council therefore resolves:

1. To wholeheartedly endorse and agree to fully support the call for the holding of a National Referendum on our continued membership of the European Union, and as a consequence of this the Council authorises the Leader of the Council to:

A) Write to the Prime Minister to advise him of this council’s position and to urge him during the year ahead to agree a binding timetable for a National Referendum , on our membership of the EU , so it can take place in 2014.

 

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