The council welcomes petitions from those who live, work, or study in South Oxfordshire and recognises that petitions are one way in which people can let us know their concerns or the strength of public feeling.
All petitions sent or presented to the council will receive an acknowledgement from the council within 10 working days of receipt. This acknowledgement will set out what we plan to do with the petition, which will likely involve consulting the relevant department. We will treat something as a petition if it is identified as being a petition, or if it seems to us that it is intended to be a petition.
Petitions can also be presented to a meeting of the Council. These meeting dates and times can be found here. If you would like to present your petition, or would like your councillor or someone else to present it on your behalf, please contact Democratic Services at least 10 working days before the meeting and they will talk you through the process.
If your petition has received over 500 signatures or more it will also be scheduled for a council debate. If this is the case we will let you know when this will happen, and invite you to present the petition.
Paper petitions can be sent to:
South Oxfordshire and Vale of White Horse District Councils
You can create, sign and submit petitions online. The same procedures apply to these as paper petitions, but ePetitions can be published on the council website and are open to signatures for a specified period.
How will the council respond to petitions?
Our response to a petition will depend on what a petition asks for and how many people have signed it, but may include one or more of the following:
• taking the action requested in the petition
• considering the petition at a council meeting
• undertaking research or holding an inquiry into the matter
• holding a public meeting
• holding a consultation
• holding a meeting with petitioners
• referring the petition for consideration by the council’s scrutiny committee
• writing to the petition organiser setting out our views about the request in the petition
In addition to these steps, the council will consider all the specific actions it can potentially take on the issues highlighted in a petition.
Planning, Licencing and Statutory Petitions
If the petition applies to a planning or licensing application, or if it is a statutory petition (for example requesting a referendum on having a mayor) other procedures apply and we won’t necessarily apply the above procedure. For example, a petition on a planning application will be treated as a comment on that application through the standard planning application consultation process.