Today we have gone out to Birmingham and the world with our Campaign for an elected mayor for Birmingham.
It is always easy to get into a debate with those holding the opposite view – but we are a positive campaign – to say Yes, Yes to changing the current stale politics that is not pushing our great city forward but actually holding Birmingham back and preventing it from reaching its full potential.
Here are some reasons and thoughts on why I am saying Yes to Birmingham and why I urge all Brummies to engage with the debate, engage with our Yes campaign and help us to unshackle Birmingham!
Yes to Birmingham: Yes to a Birmingham Mayor
1.The Mayor will be directly elected by Brummies and will be held to account by them
- Brummies can choose their Mayor (unlike the Leader of the Council) directly, based on that person’s manifesto, character and track record
- Brummies can expect much greater visible leadership from their Mayor and hold them to account on whether they are delivering on their promises
- Evidence from other cities demonstrate that a directly elected mayor boosts economic growth, regeneration and also democratic engagement
2. The Mayor will be a high profile figurehead and ambassador for Birmingham
- Virtually all successful cities throughout the world have a powerful mayor responsible for the social and economic well-being and growth of the city
- The Mayor will be responsible for leading the city and representing it and selling it to the outside world eg to attract investment and businesses bringing more jobs to the city
- The Mayor will have the profile and direct authority to make the big decisions on eg planning, transport, education, social services
3. The Mayor will have direct executive power to drive policy ideas into real outcomes for our city
- The Mayor will have the clout to sort out the buses that Brummies rely on to get to work, to school, to the doctors…
- The Mayor will have the power of the current Leader and Cabinet, with personal responsibility to deliver the policies and vision that they will be elected on
- The Mayor could also get the power of the Chief Executive in order to deliver transformational change throughout the City Council