Changes in government legislation in the Local Government Act 2000 gave local authorities the option of switching to a mayoral system instead of the ‘Council Leader’ model. Rochdale has the 'Council Leader' model in operation.
How often will elections take place for an elected Mayor?
Elections will take place every 4 years.
Will there still be a Civic Mayor?
Yes. The Chair of the Council, who cannot be the elected Mayor, will continue to be known as the Civic Mayor.
The Civic Mayor is one of the 60 elected councillors and is chosen annually by full council. The Civic Mayor is usually someone who has been a councillor for a number of years. The office of Civic Mayor is a (largely) ceremonial post, and by tradition, the councillor who holds that office takes no part in the political life of the council for their year of office.
What about local councillors?
Each ward will continue to be represented by 3 councillors. Local elections for councillors will continue to take place as before, and this is independent of the Mayoral election process.
Can the elected Mayor be removed by the council?
No, the elected Mayor holds office for 4 years and cannot be voted out of office by councillors.
Will we have the directly elected Mayor system indefinitely?
Yes if it's voted in a referendum, unless a new law is passed by Parliament to allow Rochdale voters to return to the previous system.
The elected Mayor decides on which kind of decisions are taken by:
- The elected Mayor
- The Cabinet
- Individual Cabinet members
All key decisions must be made in public unless the matter is confidential.
Most decision making of the council is delegated to officers because of the large number of decisions that must be made.
Will the elected Mayor have extra legal powers that the council didn't previously have?
No. The elected Mayor doesn't have any more formal legal powers than the previous Council Leader.