At a recent meeting of Cheshire East Council, a motion regarding the future of the authority’s mayoralty was debated.
Councillors present at the meeting agreed to ask the constitution committee to review the role of the Cheshire East mayor.
As part of their campaign during the May 2019 local elections, Cheshire East Labour published a local manifesto which said that a Labour authority would promote town mayors and abolish the Cheshire East mayoralty.
Labour expects the change to bring about a saving of around £100,000 per year.
James Barber – Labour councillor for Broken Cross & Upton, in Macclesfield – proposed the motion,
Cllr Barber asked: “In times of increasing financial restrictions, do we need a Cheshire East mayor?
“Our local mayors play an important role in our towns and parishes, acting as the face of their councils.
“With the Cheshire East mayoralty costing nearly £100,000 a year, we have to question whether the pomp and ceremony is worth this money, and whether it is conducive to efficient meetings.”
Cllr Barber added: “Residents want this money spent on fixing their roads, emptying their bins and ensuring good quality services.”
Cllr Sam Corcoran, leader of Cheshire East Council, added: “I would like to see our town mayors promoted.
“There is no need for a Cheshire East mayor to turn up to events where the local town mayor is already attending.’’
In the May elections Labour increased the number of seats it held on the council from 16 to 25 and the Conservatives lost overall control of the council for the first time in its history.
The Labour group’s manifesto is still available to view online at www.ncla.uk.
The present mayor of Cheshire East is independent councillor Cllr Barry Burkhill. The review was mooted prior to his appointment, and is not thought to be linked to the actions of any specific former post-holder.
Cheshire West and Chester Council does not appoint a borough mayor, but the position of Lord Mayor of Chester exists and is presently held by Cllr Mark Williams.
You can read more about mayors in Cheshire, here.