Osborne setting bad precedent ignoring the Manchester Mayoral Referendum of May 2112. New plan needs new vote. pic.twitter.com/l2xfUsq9EC
— Mike Smithson (@MSmithsonPB) November 3, 2014
Should previous referenda be ignored?
The big announcement from George Osborne today has been that Greater Manchester is to have an elected mayor who’ll preside over regional issues. This has been agreed with leaders of 10 councils in the region. The plan is for the new mayor to oversee policies like transport, social care and housing. Also police budgets will be included.
Politically this is quite astute because of the number marginals in the North West and here he can show that this part of England is not being forgotten
Only problem is that in May 2012 electors in Manchester voted to reject a proposal to have an elected mayor.
That was for the city and this proposal covers a much wider region.
Even though civic leaders from the region, perhaps attracted by the prospect of extra resources, have agreed the deal doesn’t mean that the 2012 referendum can be ignored. After all what’s the point of having them if within couple of years the outcomes are to be by-passed.
It would have been better, surely, to put the new proposals to the vote. Not doing so sets what could be tricky precedents.
A mistake methinks.
Meanwhile Ladbrokes have opened the betting on who’ll get the new job.