Laura Sharman 19 October 2015

Council leader resigns over governance changes

Council leader resigns over governance changes image

Stephen Mansbridge has resigned as the leader of Guildford Borough Council, saying he can not accept changes to the way the council is run.

Mr Mansbridge, who has also resigned as a councillor for Ash South and Tongham, had voted against the introduction of new Executive Advisory Boards.

In a statement, he said: ‘I have been minded to step down for sometime and, whilst I have been asked to stay, I no longer feel able to do so. I hold strong views about how the council is run and about its ability to make strong and good decisions. I cannot accept the changes in Governance, which is why I voted against them at a recent council meeting.

‘I have been passively in favour of a petition for a directly elected mayor because a successful petition would nullify any petition that attempts to weaken the Council's governance under the shroud of improved democracy. My view has evolved, in line with George Osborne's direction for greater devolution, to be that we need larger entities with directly elected mayors.’

Deputy leader, cllr Nigel Manning, will take over the role of leader until a new one is elected on 8 December.

Cllr Manning, said: ‘There is a lot to do and we continue to work on the challenging programme we've agreed.’

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