Brighton and Hove City Council has formally announced the candidates to be the next mayor and deputy mayor.
Green councillor Lizzie Deane is expected to become the next mayor of Brighton and Hove at the “annual council” meeting next week, taking over from Labour councillor Alan Robins.
And another Labour councillor, Jackie O’Quinn, is expected to become deputy mayor at the meeting at Brighton Town Hall.
By convention, the deputy mayor could usually expect to be elected mayor a year later.
The ceremonial role is politically neutral but this year the process has been dogged by a party political row.
The former Conservative leader of the council, Mary Mears, had been expected to become mayor, having serving as deputy mayor since May 2020.
But Councillor Mears is unable to take on the role for health reasons so her party used its turn to nominate a candidate to put forward Councillor Dawn Barnett instead.
But, unusually, the Greens and Labour opposed the nomination, with Councillor Deane – who had been expected to serve a year as deputy mayor – now likely to step straight into the mayoral robes.
The mayor is elected by all 54 members of the council at the annual council meeting which usually takes place in May.
Councillor Robins served two years as mayor, having taken office during the first national coronavirus lockdown, with Councillor Mears as his deputy.
Those at the annual meeting next week will also be due to vote on who sits on each of the council’s policy committees and regulatory committees.
The meeting will also decide which councillors will sit on committees or boards of organisations outside of the council but which have council involvement or oversight.
The annual meeting is due to start at 4.30pm on Thursday 26 May at Brighton Town Hall.
The council said: “Attendance at the meeting is limited to support social distancing arrangements.
“The 54 current councillors are invited to attend physically as too are a small number of guests of the mayoral candidate.
“Six members of the public can attend in person and should contact the council’s Democratic Services on firstname.lastname@example.org or 01273 292086 to request to attend. Places will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.
“The meeting will be webcast so people will be able to view it via the council’s website.”
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