Election Result (Liverpool City Region Combined Authority, 2017): Mayor: Labour (Steve Rotheram)

Election Result (Liverpool City Region Combined Authority, 2017): Mayor: Labour (Steve Rotherham)

Election Result (Liverpool City Region Combined Authority, 2017): Mayor: Labour (Steve Rotherham)

                                 

Polling station 4th May 2017 resized
Polling station 4th May 2017 resized

Please note we would have been happier reporting from the count centre but the Combined Authority Returning Officer Ged Fitzgerald was not happy with us being there.

Election Result (Liverpool City Region Combined Authority, 2017): Mayor: Steve Rotheram (Labour Party)

Liverpool City Region Combined Authority (Mayor) (2017)
 
Name of candidate     Description (if any)  Votes   %
Rotheram
Steve
 Labour Party  171,167   59.3%   Elected
Caldeira
Tony
 Conservatives  58,805   20.4%   Not elected
Cashman
Carl  
 Liberal Democrat  19,751   6.84%   Not elected
Crone
Tom
 Green Party  14,094   4.88%   Not elected
Walters
Paula
 UK Independence Party   11,940   4.14%   Not elected
Bannister
Roger
 Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition   7,881   2.73%   Not elected
Morton
Tabitha
 Women’s Equality Party   4,247   1.49%   Not elected
Breen
Paul
 Get the Coppers off the Jury   729   0.25%   Not elected

There were 2,789 rejected ballot papers. Turnout was 26.1%. The turnout for the Wirral area was 27.8%. The electorate was 1,116,495. Any candidate with less than 5% of the first preference vote loses their £5,000 deposit (Tom Crone (Green), Paula Walters (UKIP), Roger Bannister (TUSC), Tabitha Morton (Women’s Equality Party) and Paul Breen (Get the Coppers off the Jury).

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Is the public receiving value for money for the £2.5 million spent on the Mayoral election?

Is the public receiving value for money for the £2.5 million spent on the Mayoral election?

Is the public receiving value for money for the £2.5 million spent on the Mayoral election?

                                  

This tale is a rather tangled web involving Liverpool City Council’s involvement in the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority Mayoral election, the Electoral Commission and the Cabinet Office. It’s an update to Why has Liverpool City Council blocked my request to view the nomination papers of the 8 candidates wanting to be Liverpool City Region Combined Authority Mayor?

Ged Fitzgerald (Chief Executive, Liverpool City Council) tries to explain devolution to a meeting of the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority Scrutiny Panel 28th October 2015
Ged Fitzgerald (Chief Executive, Liverpool City Council) tries to explain devolution to a meeting of the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority Scrutiny Panel 28th October 2015

You would think that asking the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority Returning Officer Ged Fitzgerald (pictured above) for a copy of the candidates’ nomination papers would be a simple matter.

After all shouldn’t it be I ask, they are sent? It ran smooth enough with the nomination papers for candidates in the Claughton byelection and we can then publish them.

Instead this ends up being a tangled web of corporate governance involving Liverpool City Council, the Electoral Commission, the Cabinet Office and the Department for Communities and Local Government.

Considering there is a general election on the way might it be an idea to have some clarity on these issues?

Liverpool City Council’s response is that I am not allowed to inspect based on Electoral Commission guidance which refers to a candidate’s right to inspect and object.

The Electoral Commission agrees with me that the Electoral Administration Act 2006 applies (but only if there is other secondary legislation that applies), specifically s.42, s.43 and s.44 but state that the legislation I am requesting a copy of the nomination papers under Sch.3, Pt 2, para 11 of the Local Elections (Principal Areas) (England and Wales) Rules 2006 doesn’t apply to elections of combined authority mayors because rule 2 in their view doesn’t cover combined authority mayoral elections.

I am then referred back to the Combined Authorities (Mayoral Elections) Order 2017.

The problem is the guidance that the Electoral Commission issued and their current guidance relies on the original version of the Elections (Principal Areas) (England and Wales) Rules 2006 from 2006.

Combined Authorities (Mayoral Elections) Order 2017, Schedule 4, paragraph 3 amended Rule 2 of the Local Elections (Principal Areas) (England and Wales) Rules 2006.

The Cabinet Office was approached for their response. The Cabinet Office Press Office emailed us and stated that the Cabinet Office cannot comment on the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority Mayoral Election because Parliament has been dissolved and we are in the pre-election period before a general election. I thank the Cabinet Office for taking the time to reply.

So of course when I wrote about this, (published at 9:52 on the 3rd May 2017) within 37 minutes of publishing Wirral Council contact me and refuse my press accreditation for the Claughton byelection, general election and Liverpool City Region Combined Authority Mayoral election.

Then shortly after the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority Returning Officer refused a similar request to attend the count too.

Local government officials are paid large amounts extra on their salary be paid to do a job. The overall amount paid for by the taxpayer for running this election (which is paid for by the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority) is from memory £2.5 million (although this report agreed by the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority states that’s £2 million for staff and £0.5 million on the candidates booklet sent to each household (although the candidates in it had to pay towards its costs too).

I admit the above is a minor point but if it symptomatic of what is going on then shouldn’t some of these fees either be claimed back or not paid at all?

At the Employment Tribunal of Alison Mountney we heard that Surjit Tour and Kate Robinson provided assurance (and were both paid extra) that the election was being run as it should. For this they were paid extra money (a four-figure sum extra each).

I’ve no idea who provides the assurance in a Combined Authority Mayoral election to the Combined Authority Returning Officer Ged Fitzgerald or the Local Returning Officer Eric Robinson.

All I will say is that pieces like this wouldn’t be possible to write if you’d approved our attendance at the count as we wouldn’t have the time to write them! So thank you!

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Election Result (Wirral Council, 2017): Claughton: Labour hold (Gillian Wood)

Election Result (Wirral Council, 2017): Claughton: Labour hold (Gillian Wood)

Election Result (Wirral Council, 2017): Claughton: Labour hold (Gillian Wood)

                                 

Polling station 4th May 2017 resized
Polling station 4th May 2017 resized

Please note we would have been happier reporting from the count centre about half a mile away but Wirral Council were not happy with the press being there.

Election Result (Wirral Council, 2017): Claughton: Gillian Wood (Labour Party)

Claughton Ward (2017)
 
Name of candidate     Description (if any)  Votes   %
Wood
Gillian
 Labour Party  1,761   52%   Elected
Evans
David Robert Cynlais
 Liberal Democrats  740   22%   Not elected
Sinclair
Barbara Vera  
 Conservative  567   17%   Not elected
Heydon
Liz
 Green Party  136   4%   Not elected
Jones
Beryl Rosina
 UK Independence Party   130   4%   Not elected
Wheddon
Leon Allen
 Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition   27   1%   Not elected

There were 11 rejected ballot papers, the electorate was 11,336 and the turnout was 30%.

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