We should all get to vote for the person who leads the city. It should not be a behind-closed-doors decision of a single political party.
The government is offering greater freedoms and faster access to funding to those cities that choose to have a mayor.
Cities without mayors will be in a second-city-division. Leaders of Councils will be in a second-leadership-division.
No-one running the city now is keen to create a metropolitan Nottingham; turkeys don’t vote for Christmas.
A new mayor, unrestrained by party-political chains, could work to create a metropolitan Nottingham and that would be a good thing.
A mayor does not weaken the council. It makes it more powerful by making it more relevant. A mayor and an already high-achieving council, working together, could be very effective.
Parties opposing a new mayor see a threat to their power. Politicians opposing a mayor now may see an opportunity once nominations open.
There will be some savings, a one-off cost to the council to run the referendum and election and the mayor will be paid a salary. It’s worth paying a small price for increased democracy, even in relatively difficult economic times.
Not many people know the name of the Leader of the Council. A lot more would know the name of the mayor. It’s a crude test, but it matters.
The referendum is not a Yes / No question. If you want a directly elected mayor for Nottingham you have to vote for ‘a change from how the council is run now’.
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