Home News Greens shadow cabinet to take on Labour in Bristol

Greens shadow cabinet to take on Labour in Bristol

51
0

The joint largest political group on Bristol City Council has elected a shadow cabinet in a bid to provide stronger opposition to the ruling Labour-only group.

The Greens won as many seats as Labour in May’s local elections but were excluded from the Labour-only cabinet handpicked by city mayor Marvin Rees.

Now the 24-strong group led by Clifton councillor Paula O’Rourke has elected 12 of its members to create a job-sharing shadow cabinet which largely mirrors the mayor’s eight-member ruling group.

READ MORE: Bristol Greens seek ‘real power and influence’ on council after cabinet rebuff

Shadow cabinet members will between them share nine portfolios, one more than the Labour group, after splitting a very large portfolio into two to reflect a greater focus on climate and ecology.

Announcing the shadow cabinet on Tuesday (July 6), Cllr O’Rourke told a full council meeting: “The purpose of this body is to have lead members in each of the portfolios, and by having strong, well-informed leads in each of the cabinet portfolios we will be best placed to hold the administration to account.”

Cllr O’Rourke has taken on the same portfolio as Marvin Rees, Planning and City Design.

Green councillors Heather Mack and Katy Grant are up against deputy mayor Craig Cheney, with Finance, Governance and Performance.

Cllrs Barry Parsons and Ani Stafford-Townsend have Communities, Culture, Equalities and Public Health, a slightly renamed version of deputy mayor Asher Craig’s brief.

Christine Townsend, who has 25 years of experience in state education, takes on Education, Families and Children’s Services, opposite Labour’s Helen Godwin.

Lorraine Francis and Tim Wye are sharing Adult Social Care, held by Helen Holland on the Labour cabinet. Cllr Francis is an experienced social worker and Cllr Wye has headed up commissioning of social care for adults in both the council and the NHS.

The very large portfolio of Climate, Ecology, Waste and Energy held by Labour’s Nicola Beech has been split into two by the Green shadow cabinet, with Carla Denyer and Lily Fitzgibbon taking on Climate and Ecology, and Martin Fodor responsible for Waste and Energy. Cllr Fitzgibbon was a founding member of Bristol’s climate youth strikes, and Cllr Denyer successfully pushed for Bristol to be the first city to declare a climate emergency.

Tony Dyer takes on Housing, Delivery and Homes for the Greens, opposite Labour’s Tom Renhard.

Transport has a slightly different focus under the Greens, with Cllr David Wilcox responsible for a portfolio called Transport and Active Travel. The Labour cabinet brief of Transport was handed to Cllr Don Alexander by the Labour mayor yesterday.

Announcing the details of her shadow cabinet on Friday (July 9), Cllr O’Rourke said: “We hope to work collegiately with the Labour cabinet as much as possible to get the best for Bristol.

“While we will aim to be a critical friend to the administration wherever we can, we also won’t shy away from using our strength in the council to call out the administration, or hold the Labour mayor and cabinet to account where needed.

“The Green shadow cabinet will be a voice for social and environmental justice across Bristol. We will press the council for the bold action the city needs, whether on housing, transport or the climate emergency.”

Get the best stories about the things you love most curated by us and delivered to your inbox every day. Choose what you love here

Previous articleHow to get rid of weeds between pavers – easy hack using white vinegar
Next articleCancer New Moon horoscope: What’s in store for EVERY sign this weekend

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here