MP speaks out against plans for shadow mayors

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A SOUTH Yorkshire Labour politician is urging fellow MPs to reject plans to create shadow mayors for cities including Sheffield - before referendums to decide whether the public wants them.

Don Valley MP Caroline Flint spoke out against the plans, in the Government’s Localism Bill, which is to be voted this week.

The proposals would see Sheffield Council leader Julie Dore take on the position.

But Ms Flint, Labour’s shadow communities and local government secretary, said: “The Government is imposing shadow mayors on cities regardless of whether they want one or not. That’s both unfair and undemocratic and Labour will be calling for a Commons vote next week to oppose their plans.

“Elected mayors can offer effective leadership, which is why Labour in government gave people the power and opportunity to elect them.

“But it must be up to local people to decide, not the Local Government Secretary Eric Pickles, sitting in his office in Whitehall.”

She added: “Labour is also against Pickles’ plan to combine the role of mayor and chief executive..”