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Labour Rent Control advocate set to lose his job

Voters in Bristol have decided to abolish the city’s directly elected mayor following a referendum.

The city was given the choice of a mayor or a committee system in which decisions are made by groups of councillors.

On a 29 per cent turnout 56,113 voted to scrap the post of elected Mayor, currently held by Labour’s Marvin Rees.

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Rees will continue in post for two years, however, before the position is finally abolished.

Earlier this year Rees teamed up with local anti-landlord activists to look at how to introduce local rent controls in the city, holding a so-called summit on the issue in early March.

At the time he said: “The national housing crisis poses big challenges for our city and tackling it remains one of the council’s top priorities.

“As well as accelerating the building of affordable housing across Bristol, we are currently strengthening our powers to tackle rogue landlords, and we have invested £42m in improving the energy efficiency of our council homes.

“I made a manifesto commitment to campaign for the power to introduce rent controls to make Bristol an affordable living city, and we are calling on government to give us the power to regulate rents.

“Piloting rent control in Bristol will allow us to take a step towards tackling our local renting crisis and will help us develop learnings and that can inform wider positive change for the rest of the city.”

Rees claimed that there were over 134,000 people currently renting privately in Bristol, representing almost one-third of the population. 

He added that over the last decade, private rents in Bristol had increased by 52 per cent, while wages had only risen by 24 per cent, and on average Bristol residents now needed to spend almost nine times their annual salary to buy a house.

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  •  G romit

    Still 2 years before he steps down to wreak havoc.
    And of course, he'll want to leave a legacy.

  • icon

    Good riddance to bad rubbish

  • icon

    The position of Mayor is just another layer of administration which costs the council tax payers a 6 figure sum every year…. Plus expense’s !!

  • David Saunders

    We've endured 3 Mayors since the role of London Mayor was first introduced in year 2000. All 3 were/are 1 trick ponies and spent £millions of taxpayers money installing LTNs and rarely used cycle lanes supposedly to reduce pollution but the traffic congestion caused by them has caused pollution from all those idling engines to reach never seen before higher levels. Now we are hearing he is about to set about reforming PRS in London along the lines of attaching scandalous ahead of the word landlord and introducing rent controls so I'm guessing homelessness will hit new peaks before he's finished.

  • Andrew Murray

    My bet is that someone will decide that the people of Bristol didn't know what they were voting for and the post of mayor will stay or they will have to have another vote. The people of Greater Manchester were asked if they wanted a mayor and they voted NO, and then a few years later low and behold a mayor position was imposed.

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