New Mayor of Calderdale prepares to take up office

Calderdale’s next first citizen is set to be appointed when a council holds its annual meeting next week.

By John Greenwood - Local Democracy Reporter
Thursday, 12th May 2022, 11:30 am

The first item of business is to elect a new Mayor, and – subject to councillors’ approval – Coun Angie Gallagher is set to take the chain of office at Halifax Town Hall on Wednesday, May 18.

Coun Gallagher was Deputy Mayor to Coun Dot Foster’s Mayor from 2019 to 2021, including through the early part of the COVID-19 pandemic.

She was nominated by councillors earlier this year but had to fight and win an election before the official process next week, holding her Elland seat with an increased majority.

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Angie Gallagher, Labour, wins Elland at Calderdale Council Election count 2022

Coun Gallagher’s husband, Jim, will be her consort, a role he also took during her time as Deputy Mayor.

A vote will also be taken to appoint a Deputy Mayor, and Coun Gallagher (Lab) said earlier this year that it would be Coun Stephanie Clarke (Lab, Illingworth and Mixenden), whose consort will be her daughter, Caroline Clarke.

Other business the council will conduct include approving vote of thanks to retiring Mayor, Coun Chris Pillai (Con, Rastrick), and Deputy Mayor, Coun Howard Blagbrough (Con, Brighouse).

The council will also have to approve an allowance available to the Mayor and Deputy Mayor, and receive the official returns for councillors elected following the May 5 local elections.

They will also pass a vote of thanks to retiring councillors.

Following a lunch break they will elect a Leader of the Council – this is currently Coun Tim Swift (Lab, Town) – and the appointed leader will then name their Cabinet members and portfolios.

Membership of scrutiny boards, council committees and other panels will also take place.

Having decided the size, terms of reference and scheme of delegations for these, they will need to agree the allocation of seats to political groups in accordance with the council’s political balance rules.

Members will also approve councillor appointments to a range of outside bodies including West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Authority, West Yorkshire Combined Authority, West Yorkshire Police and Crime Panel and West Yorkshire Joint Services Committee.

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