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Rotheram appoints top team – but no deputy

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Liverpool City Region elected mayor Steve Rotheram (Lab) has made appointments to his top team - but he is yet to announce who will be his deputy.

Following the first meeting of the combined authority since the mayoral election on Friday, it has been confirmed that Mr Rotheram himself has taken responsibility for policy, finance and resources, digital and innovation.

But he is yet to announce to who will be deputy mayor, as required under the Cities & Local Government Devolution Act 2016.

LGC is awaiting clarification on when a deputy mayor will be appointed.

Liverpool City Council elected mayor Joe Anderson (Lab), who recently failed in a bid to replace Mr Rotheram as Walton MP after failing to secure the Labour Party nomination, has been handed the portfolio for housing and public service reform.

Two of the appointments to the nine portfolios are not council leaders. 

Asif Hamid, chair of the city region’s local enterprise partnership, takes on responsibility for business and Brexit, while Liverpool councillor Liam Robinson (Lab), who is currently chair of strategic transport body Merseytravel, will lead on transport.

Knowsley MBC leader Andy Moorhead (Lab) has been handed the health, adult and children’s services portfolio, while Wirral MBC leader Phil Davies takes on economic development and culture. 

Sefton MBC leader Ian Maher (Lab) has taken on skills and apprenticeships, while St Helens leader Barrie Grunewald (Lab) has been given responsibility for spatial planning, environment and air quality.

Halton MBC leader Rob Polhill (Lab) has been appointed to the energy and renewables brief. 

Merseytravel chief executive Frank Rogers will take on the role of lead officer for transport as well as the combined authority’s interim head of paid service, pending a permanent appointment.

He replaces Ged Fitzgerald, who has stepped aside as the combined authority’s head of paid service as well as from his role as Liverpool City Council chief executive following his arrest on suspicion of conspiracy to pervert the course of justice and witness intimidation.

LGC is awaiting confirmation on the other lead officer roles.

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