Manchester City Council

Making Manchester Greater

A lunch time meeting today with an all-party group of leaders and chief executives and legal advisers, a sub-group set up by AGMA, the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities, to look at a brand new constitution to govern the way the ten greater Manchester local authorities work together to improve the economy of the city region.

Investment doesn't happen according to local government boundaries, so we shouldn't let those boundaries get in the way of our growth. At the same time we all have a local electorate to account to and we need to make sure that the new arrangements are open and transparent and that there is the opportunity for local Councillors and the public to be able to scrutinise what AGMA does on their behalf. It's in all our best interests to work together - we all want to see more business and industry thriving here with more and better jobs being filled both by local people and the welcome reversal in population over the last ten years. For 40 years previously people were leaving the area. Now once again they are coming here and that's good for all of us.

Then a board meeting for New East Manchester, our urban Regeneration Company, a four-way partnership between residents, the Council, English Partnerships, and the North West Development Agency, charged with bringing vitality back to the East of our city. New acting Chief Executive, Eddie Smith, is holding the reins following the departure of Manchester regeneration veteran, Tom Russell. It's a challenging time for New East Manchester with an expected decision soon on the future of the regional casino. We are determined we will do all we can to bring the 3,000 jobs to the area, and we are looking at all options to do this.

And in the evening, it's a gathering, on Tony's birthday to launch the first phase of a lasting tribute to Tony Wilson, one designed to bring benefit to talented young people in Manchester. There's a lot of opinion and passionate discussion as we look at the proposed year one of the Tony Wilson Experience, 24 hours to inspire and motive young people in every field of art and creativity, issues that were so close to Tony's heart. The evening ended with cake and champagne, a fitting way of celebrating a Manchester renaissance man's birthday.

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The blog of the leader of Manchester City Council, Councillor Richard Leese.

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