“At least 2 months before a Referendum, the Council must draw up, and consult upon, proposals for the operation of a Mayor and Cabinet executive. The proposals must identify which local choice functions are to be the responsibility of the executive under these arrangements, give a timetable for implementation, details of any transitional arrangements and outline ‘fall-back proposals’ (alternative proposals in the event that the Mayor and Cabinet proposals are rejected in the Referendum). The Council must send its proposals to the Welsh Ministers and comply with any requests for further information, guidance or direction issued by the Welsh Ministers. The role of the Welsh Ministers is to monitor the proposals and, if necessary, take steps to ensure they are properly implemented.” – The Council
Feburary 11 2016
In the lead up to the campaign launch for a directly elected mayor, supporters from political parties have been voicing their support for the need for a referendum.
Plaid Cymru add their support and by doing so are the first party to fully endorse a directly elected mayor for Cardiff.
Councillor Gareth Holden from Gabalfa said, “Plaid Cymru, the party of Wales, is interested in the opinion of residents in Cardiff of the proposed elected mayor. We recognise a need for clear improvements to the leadership of Cardiff and embrace any discussion regarding this. We believe that people should be given the right to decide if they want an elected mayor and support a referendum on the issue.”
The launch will take place on Queen Street in Cardiff, 12th February, with campaigners taking to the street to start collecting the 24,647 votes needed from the Cardiff electorate to trigger a referendum.
If the referendum is successful and a Yes vote is won, then Cardiff could have Wales’ first directly elected Mayor in 2017. There are already 17 directly elected Mayors in England, with more on the way.
February 12 2016
The campaign to collect signatures to trigger a referendum for a directly elected mayor is launching today on the streets of Cardiff.
For the next six months, campaigners will be asking the Cardiff electorate to sign a petition which, if enough votes are collected, will force Cardiff Council to hold a referendum asking the people of Cardiff to decide on whether they want a directly elected mayor.
If the referendum is successful and a Yes vote is won, then Cardiff could have Wales’ first directly elected Mayor in 2017.
Cllr Fenella Bowden, who is co-Chair of the campaign group said, “This campaign to bring a directly elected Mayor to Cardiff will make a positive change for the city.
“I would like to see the people of Cardiff engaged in this debate as a new mayor could help deliver breakthrough solutions to the challenges of transport, housing and good quality jobs for local people.
“The window of opportunity for change has opened and we must act upon it”
Over the past week a range of individuals and politicians across the city have offered support including the entire Plaid Cymru group; and several Labour councillors including former leaders Heather Joyce and Russell Goodway.
The Conservative party has long highlighted the role a visible, directly-accountable champion could have for many areas in Wales. Leader of the Welsh Conservatives, Andrew RT Davies, said:
“Directly-elected Mayors can reinvigorate local politics; enhance accountability and provide a loud, proud, local voice for our communities.
“Cardiff could benefit immensely from a recognisable, well-known local figurehead, who carries a clear mandate to speak for the entire community – so Welsh Conservatives back this campaign wholeheartedly.”
Cardiff’s Liberal Democrats will not be adding their voice to calls for a referendum on a mayor for Cardiff. Their objection is based on the uncertainty surrounding local authority reorganisation.
The current system means the council has a leader who heads up a ‘cabinet’, chosen by other councillors.
Campaigners argue that having a directly-elected mayor will be “cheaper, more accountable and give every Cardiff citizen a say in how they are governed”.
The campaign will go out to every ward in Cardiff over the next six months collecting signatures and petition forms will also be held at various points around the city or can be downloaded from the website – www.mayorforcardiff.wales.