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Bigger than Boris

Bigger than Boris

🕔24.Apr 2012

A timely report from the Centre for Cities spells out the size of the challenge for any new mayors that appear following next week’s referendum – none larger it seems than that in Birmingham.

Throughout the report’s survey of the education, business and employment challenges in each of the cities, Birmingham sticks out in all the graphs like a lanky teenager. Here’s one, just for example:

The report says:

New city mayors will need to support and respond to the needs of their population. A mayor of Birmingham, for example, with a constituency of 1,036,900 people, would have the second biggest constituency in the country after the Mayor of London.

The Centre for Cities echoes the call of the Warwick Commission on Elected Mayors and City Leadership for the Government to look to introduce ‘Metro Mayors’ whose responsibilities cover geographical areas much wider than those proposed currently.

The think tank also makes the case for mayors to co-chair their Local Enterprise Partnerships and to head up their Integrated Transport Authority. (I report on today that Sir Albert Bore, now Liam Byrne’s running mate for mayor, has said he wants to see the Birmingham and Black Country LEPs united.)

Well worth a read. The full report is here.

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