Posted: Wed 15th Mar 2023

Paul Rogers withdraws from Mayoral nomination process – who will be Wrexham’s next Mayor? for people living in or visiting the Wrexham area
This article is old - Published: Wednesday, Mar 15th, 2023

Paul Rogers has announced he is withdrawing from the process to become the next Mayor, despite being nominated for the role, saying “it has become clear some Members of the Council will not be supporting my nomination” and thus, “I have the utmost respect for the Mayoralty and the position this holds and this is the reason for my withdrawal from the selection process”.

As the current Deputy Mayor Cllr Rogers would, by convention, be the next Mayor of Wrexham. That was due to be firmed up via a vote right now in the Guildhall which would approve the recommendations from the Constitution Working Group to make Cllr Paul Rogers Mayor and Cllr Beryl Blackmore Deputy Mayor.

There are unusual circumstances Cllr Rogers is currently serving a three month suspension – meaning he is not a councillor – after what the Ombudsman statement last month referred to as ‘incident which occurred on a bus’, with the Local Standards Committee finding Cllr Rogers had breached the Code of Conduct. The suspension started on the 16th of February and will end on Tuesday, 16th May. ‌​‌​‌​​​‍‌​‌​​‌‌‌‍‌​‌‌​​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌‌​​

Yesterday strong opposition to the nomination was voiced by the Plaid Cymru group, and Labour are understood not to support Cllr Rogers becoming Mayor either.

The report before Full Council right now does state the nominations are “subject to acceptance of the office” by the nominee, so by withdrawing ahead of that it nullifies the recommendation outcome.

Paul Rogers told us, “I can confirm that I am withdrawing from the nomination for the Election of Mayor for the period 2023/2024.

“During this difficult time, I have received huge amounts of encouragement from colleagues, the local community and wider County Borough. However over recent days it has become clear some Members of the Council will not be supporting my nomination.

“I have the utmost respect for the Mayoralty and the position this holds and this is the reason for my withdrawal from the selection process.

“I am humbled by all the support that I have received and would like to thank everybody for this, particularly my family, friends, constituents and fellow Elected Members.

“Brymbo deserves a strong voice and when I return to office in May I will continue to stand up for local residents and represent them to the best of my ability for the next four years.”

Wrexham will effectively be Mayor-less at the Annual Meeting of the Council, where business opens with the ‘election of the Mayor’, there is roughly 9 weeks maximum for councillors to now come together and find a replacement the majority can agree on.

The wider consensus approach is explained in the report before Full Council, “The Council has always endeavoured to agree on its nominations well in advance of the Annual Meeting”, adding , “The main objective is to reach agreement between all Members of the Council to ensure that the formal decision at the Annual Meeting of the Council is unanimous. The dignity of the Office of Mayor and of the Council generally would be impaired by any public disagreement on such a matter at the Council’s Annual Meeting.”

That consensus often is found behind closed doors in the Constitution Working Group, however as we have previously reported opposition groups pulled out of the group amid claims the administration ‘reran process three times’ to get their own way.

It is unclear if those groups will rejoin that Group and what will be required to change to enable it.

The Full Council meeting is now underway at the Guildhall you can watch live and read the agendas here.

Top pic: Meeting underway.

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