Conservative councillors boycotted the mayor-making ceremony this afternoon (Thursday 26 May) after their nomination, Councillor Dawn Barnett, was snubbed by Labour and the Greens.
Deputy mayor Mary Mears, the former Conservative leader of the council, had been due to take over from Labour councillor Alan Robins.
But she was unable to take on the role because of ill health and her party put forward Dawn Barnett as mayoral candidate in her stead.
But the Greens and Labour councillors said that they woud not support her nomination.
They brought forward the election of Green councillor Lizzie Deane, who had been due to become deputy mayor today and mayor next May.
In a statement before the meeting, the Conservtaives said: “We are saddened to make this decision, particularly given the mayoralty is one of the most cherished civic traditions of Brighton and Hove City Council and is meant to be non-political.
“However, as neither Labour nor the Greens support the Conservative candidate, we felt it was only fair and reasonable that we show our support for Councillor Dawn Barnett by neither attending nor voting for the new mayor and deputy mayor at this year’s annual council meeting.
“We support Dawn 100 per cent and we feel very strongly as a group that the actions of Labour and the Greens this year have been underhanded and wrong.”
The mayor’s role is ceremonial and politically neutral. Mayors spend their year raising money for charity, attending civic events, greeting official visitors, representing the city and chairing meetings of the full council.
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