Greater Manchester Referendum Campaign (GMRC) campaigners are taking to the streets of Crumpsall on Sunday 15th February 2015 to discover the real opinion of the residents of the ward of Richard Leese, Manchester City Council “leader”, who has recently been highly discredited for the shambolic and pitifully attended #manvcam “anti-cuts” rally in Albert Square (there were more counter-protesters than punters) and the severe gender imbalance at the recent Core Cities #DevoSummit
You would assume with the sweeping unilateral decisions being made by “Sir Dick Leese” that he was surfing a wave of mass popularity, giving him a mandate amongst his constituents to act with confidence with minimal referral to the people. However, this is simply not the case, as Mr Leese, in the 2012 Crumpsall local election, only received 2,499 votes and a whopping 77% of the Crumpsall electorate did not vote for him, and recent events illustrate how completely out of touch he is with ordinary Mancunians, giving the direction he is leading us in even less moral authority
Public consultation seems to be a dirty phrase these days in the “corridors of power”, so it is up to us, the people, to ascertain the word on the street and what local people actually want
Join GMRC in targeting the leader of Manchester City Council’s own ward – Crumpsall – to show the opposition to the imposed “DevoManc” devolution deal on his own doorstep. The GMRC Action Day includes surveying local opinion, taking petitions and leaflets to local shops, the hospital and residents to gather support for a referendum on devolution
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GMRC have issued this response to some frequently asked questions about the so-called “DevoManc” dodgy deal that includes the implementation of an appointed interim Mayor until at least 2017 !
Q Devo Manc – What is it?
A The biggest change in local Government since 1974, which will have consequences for everyone living in Greater Manchester for potentially decades to come.
Q What’s it about?
A They say it’s about devolution, and devolving power from central Government to the regions. In reality, however, it is no such thing and simply about the more local and efficient management of the reform, rationalisation and privatisation of all our public services across Greater Manchester, by a new Mayor and our ten existing local council leaders, subject to the approval of a new Government Minister.
Q Do we get a say in it?
A At present NONE AT ALL! Unlike the case of the Greater Manchester congestion charge when they gave us a referendum, this ‘Devo Manc’ deal is going to happen, and is already being implemented, without any reference to the views of the people of Greater Manchester whatsoever, and whether any of us like it or not.
Q That can’t be right?
A Well that’s what’s going to happen, without most people at present even knowing about it?
Q Is it that important though? Shouldn’t we want our public services to be run more efficiently and to save the taxpayer money?
A Ordinary people must surely have the basic democratic right to be consulted, scrutinise, and have a say in ANY changes, welcome or otherwise, to the way they are governed, including on any regional ‘devolution’ proposal affecting them. This would include whether they actually want it or not, and if they do, such things as what region they might be part of, and what any “devolved” decision making powers and financial settlement might go with it.
The ‘Greater Manchester Agreement’ does not provide for any of these things, but rather the very opposite, the entire ‘devolution package’ being conditional on the imposition on the people of Greater Manchester, without any reference to their views on the subject whatsoever, of a directly elected Mayor for Greater Manchester; a form of local Government, which other than in one of Greater Manchester’s 10 local authority areas, has been either directly rejected by voters, or by local Councils themselves for their own areas.
There are also many other financial arrangements that will come into effect, the details of, and full implications of which, could have considerable impact on everyone’s lives, but which, without the proper public scrutiny the ‘Greater Manchester Agreement’ denies, every one of us will have to put up with for potentially many years to come, whatever the Greater Manchester public thinks about it.
Such an apparent contempt for the views of Greater Manchester residents is simply unacceptable in our opinion.
We also believe that any transitional arrangements for the Agreement’s implementation, including the appointment of an interim Mayor (who could remain in place until 2017) should be immediately stopped, and only re-started, if at all, on the basis of a positive mandate from a referendum as we are calling for.
Q What can I do about?
A Join our campaign, and help get the word out, write to your MP and local councillors and ask them why we the public, who they all allegedly claim to ultimately serve, are being denied any say whatsoever in this so-called “radical constitutional change”
Sign the Peition @
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