Group setting up Bristol’s new committee-run council will ask for ‘views from the city’
Bristol City Council has a new committee. It’s called “The Committees Committee”. It has a big job trying to get a cross-party group of councillors to agree how the council will make decisions when the Executive Mayor post is abolished in May 2024.
The Referendum in May this year asked if voters wanted to keep or abolish the post of Mayor, but did not detail how the council would decide policy after this.
It’s still far from clear how the new committee-based system will work. The group tasked with figuring that out has 12 councillors from different parties and will be led by Labour Councillor Helen Holland, cabinet member for adult social care.
Membership is proportionally balanced between the parties depending on the number of seats they hold.
Also on the working group are Labour councillors Nicola Beech, Steve Pearce and Marley Bennett; Green councillors Jenny Bartle, Lorraine Francis, Guy Poultney and Mohamed Makawi; Conservative councillors Geoff Gollop and Richard Eddy; Liberal Democrat councillor Tim Kent; and Knowle Community Party councillor Gary Hopkins.
It’s not yet known whether the working group will meet in public or behind closed doors.
One area the working group will likely explore is Sheffield, a similar city to Bristol which also recently voted in a referendum to move to a committee-run council. Where the new committee system has been in place since May.
It’s thought that by the Autumn the new working group hoping to implement this change will open its meetings to the public and that views from the public will be sought on the issue.
Alex Seabrook - Local Democracy Reporting Service