Sheffield Green Party Councillors called on all parties to work together in a new spirit of cooperation at the Annual Council meeting on Wednesday.
Following the local elections there was no change in the number of Councillors in the political groups. This means that the Council remains in “no overall control” with no party having a majority
Councillor Douglas Johnson said,
“Greens proposed that the Council has a Leader from one party and two Co-Deputy Leaders from the other two Party groups. This would have created a balanced Leadership Team to work together, providing direction to the Council on the important issues facing the city.
“Greens also wanted to see Leaders come together on a weekly basis to agree on how to address strategic issues affecting the city. This would reflect the wishes of the voters of Sheffield who did not provide any party with an outright majority.
“This also represents a further move away from the old “Strong Leader” model that was so decisively rejected by the electorate in the governance referendum in 2021 and in local elections where the public voted the council into no-overall-control.
“Given the new Labour Leader was not even elected by a majority of his own Council group then he clearly does not have a strong mandate to lead the Council on his own. For the stability of the Council, it is important that Party Leaders work together to provide the certainty that local people and council officers need to give them a new sense of confidence in Sheffield City Council.
There were 3 nominations for Leader of the Council. Labour proposed Cllr Tom Hunt, the Liberal Democrats proposed Shaffaq Mohammed and the Green Party proposed Cllr Douglas Johnson.
All nominations were voted down.
New Labour Leader Tom Hunt was elected Leader of the Council following a run-off vote against Shaffaq Mohammed. The Green councillors didn’t support either candidate. As Tom Hunt got the support of the Labour Group and had the most votes, he became the Leader of the Council.
Unfortunately, the Green Party proposal for one Leader and Co-Deputy Leaders was rejected but in a positive new development Party Leaders and Deputy Leaders will now meet together regularly with senior council officers to discuss current issues facing the Council and provide a steer on a cross-party basis.
Cllr Douglas Johnson said,
“This is definitely a move in the right direction and will further strengthen the cross-party working that has been developed in the first year of the Council’s Committee system. More consideration of issues facing the Council across political divides will help us make better decisions.”
NOTES TO EDITORS
The Council’s rules for selecting a leader are:
If there are more than two people nominated for any position to be filled and there is not a clear majority of votes in favour of one person, then the name of the person with the least number of votes will be taken off the list and a new vote taken. The process will continue until there is a majority of votes for one person. In the event of a tie between the last two persons, the Chair shall have a second or casting vote.