Friday, 27 November 2015

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Conservatives hold on to power

THE CONSERVATIVES have extended their eight-year hold on power at Carlisle City Council today.

Tory Mike Mitchelson was re-elected as leader at this morning's annual meeting while fellow Conservative Liz Mallinson took over as mayor.

The May 3 elections, which saw Labour take a seat in Morton from the Liberal Democrats, had put the outcome in doubt.

Labour now has 25 of the 52 city councillors, which meant the Conservatives needed the support of all seven Liberal Democrats to hang on.

But one Labour councillor, John Reardon, was missing through illness, allowing the Conservatives to win by a single vote.

Labour group leader Michael Boaden was disappointed.

He said: “‘I am dismayed that the Liberal Democrats have once again supported the tired and failing leadership of the Tories.

“The decision taken today means that the city will continue to be led in an ill-focused and lacklustre way.”

Labour had put forward Mary Styth as its candidate for mayor to succeed Liberal Democrat Peter Farmer.

But she was defeated by 26 votes to 25. Mr Mitchelson then defeated Mr Boaden in the election for leader by 26 votes to 24. Independent councillor Bill Graham abstained.

The election of leader is crucial as the leader picks the rest of the ruling executive.

Conservative Jacqui Geddes was elected as deputy mayor.

If Mr Reardon had been there, the Conservatives would have needed the mayor’s casting vote to hold on.


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Is The Autumn Statement good news for Cumbria?

Yes - the enterprise zone jobs and airport flights are a fantastic boost

It's more positive than expected but could have been better

I agree with Jamie Reed, it is all smoke and mirrors

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