Statement from leaders to improvement panel – March 2016

Appearing before the Birmingham Independent Improvement Panel’s (BIIP) fourth public meeting, the leaders of the three political groups reiterated their continued cross-party commitment to delivering on the agenda to improve how the council is run.

Their collective commitment to restore the reputation of the city council and help it play a key role, alongside others, in realising the city’s full potential on a regional, national and international stage continues.

Building on this, Cllr John Clancy, Leader of the Council and the Labour Group, Cllr Robert Alden, Leader of the Conservative Group, and Cllr Jon Hunt, Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group, have agreed to meet each month with the Chief Executive, Mark Rogers, specifically to discuss strategic issues facing Birmingham.

Outlining some of those priority areas, Cllrs Clancy, Alden and Hunt said:

“The children of our city are the future of our city. We must be unflinching in our commitment to improve the safeguarding of our most vulnerable children, whilst continuing to work alongside schools to provide the very best education for all of our children.

“It is this high quality education that will enable our young people to move into jobs and gain further skills in order for them not only to live fruitful lives as adults but to contribute to the growth of their city at all levels, in all sectors and across all of the neighbourhoods of Birmingham.

“It is this economic success of Birmingham that we must all strive towards for the benefit of all who live and work in the city. And the city council must continue to improve the part it plays, working constructively alongside partners across all areas of our society to develop that vision for ‘Birmingham plc’.”

Cllrs Clancy, Alden and Hunt added that they also wanted to explore the opportunity for Birmingham City Council to become self-financing by 2020 through the local retention of business rates.

ENDS

Notes to editors:

‘The way forward: an independent review of the governance and organisational capabilities of Birmingham City Council’ was published by Lord Kerslake in December 2014. The report made a number of recommendations and also led to the establishment of the BIIP shortly afterwards, to provide robust challenge and support to the council in its response to the recommendations.

Last December, one year after Lord Kerslake’s review, a report was published detailing the council’s response to the recommendations and setting out the progress that had been made. Cllr John Clancy, Cllr Robert Alden and the then Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group, Cllr Paul Tilsley, jointly signed the 12-month report demonstrating their shared commitment to delivering the improvement agenda.

All three political leaders stated that whilst the foundations had been laid there was no room for complacency and that the hard work to restore the city council’s reputation needed to continue.

“Our shared vision is to create an organisation that works in partnership with others, empowering communities and supporting greater independence for residents,” Cllrs Clancy, Alden and Tilsley said.

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