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Street’s budget to be subjected to scrutiny

Street’s budget to be subjected to scrutiny

🕔19.Jan 2018

Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands, will be questioned about the region’s proposed budget for the coming year at a public meeting in Birmingham, reports Kevin Johnson. 

Mr Street will be quizzed by the West Midlands Combined Authority (WMCA) Overview and Scrutiny Committee about its draft budget of £178.4 million for 2018/19.

The budget would be spent on the WMCA’s operational running costs, such as £114 million for Transport for West Midlands, the Mayoral office, and investment in WMCA schemes such as the £200 million being spent on cleaning up contaminated brownfield land for industrial and housing development.

At last week’s meeting of the WMCA, a vote by Labour council leaders meant the Authority was not able to indicate that it was minded to approve a precept of £10.80 on Band D properties in the council tax system to raise £7.5 million for the Mayor’s Office.

Street loses first vote as Mayor

The meeting will be chaired by Cllr Peter Hughes of Sandwell Council.

Cllr Hughes said:

This is the first meeting ever where the West Midlands Combined Authority Mayor, Andy Street, will be questioned directly about the finances of the organisation and budget for 2018/19 and proposals for funding his office.

I feel that we are acting as a voice of the people in scrutinising finances that will have a direct impact on West Midlands residents.

Members of the public are invited to attend the meeting but only questions posed by the committee will be permitted.

The meeting takes place in Room 116 at the offices of the WMCA at 16 Summer Lane, Birmingham, B19 3SD between 10am-12pm on Wednesday January 24.

There is a limited number of public seats available and admission is by ticket only. Applications for tickets must be made here.

This event will also be streamed live through the WMCA Twitter account @WestMids_CA . There is no parking on the premises but pay-and-display on-street parking is available.

It is reported that Mr Street is looking to negotiate on the budget proposals with council leaders ahead of the final budget meeting on 9th February.

Welcome to politics, Mr Mayor

Last week, a survey in the Birmingham Post suggested Mr Street was failing to making his mark in the West Midlands. This week, he came in at number 6 in the Local Government Chronicle’s Power 100 list – some way ahead of his London and Greater Manchester counterparts who both have front line Westminster experience.

Last week’s ‘Andy who?’ is this week’s ‘Andy wow!’

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