The first past the post electoral system can result in undemocratic and potentially corrupted one-party councils. We need electoral reform for local government in England and Wales. For a long time it’s been clear that Britain’s first past the post voting system is hugely damaging for our democracy. But a new study has just shown that it’s damaging for our finances too – and poses big risks when it comes to corruption. Councils dominated by single parties could be wasting as much as £2.6bn a year through a lack of scrutiny of their procurement processes, according to a University of Cambridge analysis for the Electoral Reform Society.
Some of these local ‘one-party states’ – a product of our winner-takes-all voting system – could be getting away with poor practice when it comes to procurement, with little opposition in council chambers to point it out.
The study, undertaken by Cambridge University academic Mihály Fazekas, is titled The Cost of One-Party Councils and looks at the savings in contracting between councils dominated by a single party —or with a significant number of uncontested seats— and more competitive councils.
Full Article: £2.6bn: the price of an unfair voting system | openDemocracy.