Labour and Independent council

Labour and the independent group are set to confirm an agreement for running Cheshire East Council over the next four years, writes Stephen Topping.

A decade of Conservative rule came to an end following the May 2 elections, as the party lost its majority on the council.

Now, Labour and the independent group of councillors are expected to confirm they will form a ‘transitional’ cabinet for 2019-20 – while working towards the introduction of a committee-led governance system on CEC from May 2020.

In a post on his Facebook page today, Cllr Mick Warren, independent member for Macclesfield East, said: “In the time since the election results were announced, council officers have been advising elected members on the formation of an administration, ahead of the annual general meeting CEC on Wednesday, May 22.

“The independent group of which I am a member and the Labour group have reached an agreement, in principle, to form a ‘transitional’ cabinet for a year whilst working towards the introduction of a committee system in May 2020.

“This delay is unavoidable due to any change in the system must start at the AGM in May and it is too short a period to do it in 2019.”

A source close to the Labour group on CEC has also confirmed an agreement with the independent group is due to be announced.

The independent group is set to include the majority – but not all – of the 19 independent councillors elected on to CEC, the Local Democracy Reporting Service understands.

The group has been pushing to change CEC from a cabinet system to a committee system, which would see members from all political groups sit on decision-making boards, since last year.

They will work with the 25 Labour members who were elected on to the council this month.

The Conservative group lost 19 councillors and now has 34 members, while the Liberal Democrats have four councillors on CEC.

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