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The Mayor & the Assembly

The most immediate problem - Year 2000

The Budget

Raising money

Feedback to the Public

The Mayor & 'The City'

A Home for the Mayor & Assembly

A Constitution for London

The Nation needs a written constitution. The constituent nations with local parliaments will adopt them, so London should have one as well. This would be based on the Greater London Authority Act but include extra measures for Freedom of Information (see Feedback below) & Civil Rights.

The Mayor & the Assembly

The assembly is small & the Mayor is only one person, so these resources must be husbanded carefully. The old-style local authority committee structure would grossly over-work the members & allow a degeneration into inter party wrangling.

The assembly members will need to act as Ministers in the London Regional Government. There will be committees, of course but these will be like the informal cabinet committees, set up to referee cross-department policies & chaired by the Mayor. Any member from any party (except the BNP) can take on responsibilities providing they are prepared to. See the Organisation Chart.

This is the type of system which made Italy an apparent political shambles but a greater economic success than Britain. Power was shared with the 'opposition'. In Ken's London, Assembly Members from 'opposition' parties can either join the concensus & share power or become part of the problem, rather than the solution.

The most immediate problem - Year 2000

It may well be that the most immediate problem will be clearing up the mess from the Year 2000 problem. This may range from nothing (most unlikely) to the clearing of and organising the re-building of areas burned down in food riots and the re-introduction of the refugees from the chaos to temporary homes back in London.

The Budget

One cardinal rule will be No Budget Dumping. That is, no one will be able to shift responsibility out of their budget onto someone else's. This dirty trick is rife among agencies of all sorts. For example, social or educational problems being dumped on the Police. As the Assembly will have a co-ordinating role, they will be able to stop this.

Other regions will not be allowed to dump their budget on London.

Raising money

The Mayor's sources of income seem deliberately limited but there is more money around than immediately meets the eye:-

City's Cash

This is mentioned on the Transport page and below, a fortune squirrelled away by the City of London. Ken will want that for expanding Public Transport.


Commuters from outside Greater London impose many costs on the city that are not currently retrieved, as they spend half their weekday time in London. This is budget dumping. Ken will require every firm employing more than ten people to send a spreadsheet file in a specified format showing which employees live in which local authority outside London.then, the assembly will levy a charge for commuter costs of, say, £10 per head in the first year & see how it goes after that. This has the beauty of imposing no costs on employers in London.

Tax money

No, Ken is not going to raise taxes - that is forbidden by the Bill. But a quarter of all London's tax revenue goes out of the area, while we have some of the poorest boroughs in the country. Ken will demand our money back.


At first at least, there are going to be many naughty boys (generally, women are more sensible on average) who will try it on with the traffic & parking restrictions, so the Mayor will have quite a stream of revenue from perpetrators. Perhaps, we can upgrade the Traffic Wardens to Street Cops with the power to collect on-the-spot fines for litter & dog mess as well as traffic violations.


Ken will hunt out every penny of Euro-money, as London really is a deprived area.

The Euro

All the GLA's accounting will be in Euros & Sterling will be treated as a foreign currency. Many of the GLA's suppliers will take Euros anyway & other London firms will be encouraged to embrace the Euro sooner rather than later, in order to spread the development costs over a longer period. There is no point in accounting in an obsolescent curreny.

Feedback to the Public

Everything & Ken means everything, associated with the work of the Mayor & the Assembly will be published on the World Wide Web, just like this campaign site. By the time London Regional Government has settled down, one can expect that most citizens will be able to access the Web through their television sets with a black box on top. They will be able to at the Public Library anyway.

The Mayor & the 'City'

London has this local government anomaly called the 'City of London'. Too small to be a proper local authority on its own, it preserves its status by confusing the leadership of the Financial Community with local authority functions that go back a very long time & have a tradition of opposing the central government. In practise, this corrupt little institution has vast funds tucked away which are used for junketing & the subsidy of the City Fathers' pet schemes. The electoral system is crooked, in that only 'good chaps' (i.e. rock-ribbed reactionary Tories) are allowed to join the Corporation even if democratically elected. No other British body can exclude elected representatives.

There is no reason why this body should not be subjected to the same constitutional scrutiny as the rest of the country. As Mayor, Ken will request from Central Government, as part of a general Mayoral Enabling Bill, that the Corporation of London be abolished & the money be handed over to the London Assembly. The administration of the City could be recast in several possible ways.

The most drastic would be for the area to be split between Clerkenwell & Bunhill Wards in the Borough of Islington. Perhaps a more acceptable choice would be for the London Mayor to be ex-officio, the Mayor of the City, which would have a normal electorate (i.e. residential) but like any local authority, be open to public lobbying from the commercial interests of the area. In practise, the Deputy Mayor would probably preside on most occasions. Places such as Hampstead Heath & the housing should be handed to the boroughs in which they are located, as was done with the GLC assets in 1986.

The Financial Community can then elect an appropriate representative without all the unnecessary flummery & the requirement that the Lord Mayor be a Mason. The Lord Mayor's Show will continue as the Mayor's Show & the Mayor will use the Guildhall as the seat of the London Assembly. Goodbye, City of London & Hello, London City.

A Home for the Mayor

The obvious place, since County Hall is ruled out, is the Guildhall in the City but....

The Norman Foster building

Very imaginative but designed to the wrong brief. While London Government will start small, it is sure to expand to absorb proper regional governmental functions, especially those which the London Boroughs are really too small to perform efficiently. One can envisage more development behind the 'car headlight' original building & one can bet that it will be done on the cheap.

Links to the other Mayor pages:-
Tourism & Arts
Organisation chart
'Coming clean' (exposure of assets & liabilities)
Comment on the Greater London Authority Bill

Contact: Ken Baldry at 17 Gerrard Road, Islington, London N1 8AY
+44(0)207 359 6294 or e-mail him
Copyright: Ken Baldry 1998, 1999

Last revised 16/10/99