Night flights consultation: November to late February.
Local Election: May 5th.
Council decision on night flights: July.
This is clearly a clumsy ploy by TDC to avoid the electorate kicking the daylights out of them on election day for inflicting a lifetime of sleepless nights on them.
The consultation starts on 1st November, and will run until the second half of February (12 weeks, plus some extra to make up for Christmas and New Year). The local elections in Thanet will be on Thursday May 5th. Thanet District Council will not be deciding on the Night Flight proposal until July.
MORI, the pollsters who will probably be conducting the surveys, will presumably be collating the results as they go, and should be able to produce their findings within a few days of the consultation ending. TDC could easily decide soon after that. It's not as if all this is coming as a sudden surprise - we've had months and months of this already.
By delaying their decision until after the election, TDC councillors are giving themselves the wriggle room to tell whatever sweet lies they think the electorate want to hear, and then do whatever they like once they've got another 5 years of selfless democratic representation in the bag. Scumbags.
If you would like an "official explanation" for this evasion of democratic accountability, I suggest you ask the leader of Thanet District Council, Cllr Bayford.