Boris Johnson’s mayoral appointments have hit a road block — after a rule breach over political appointments was highlighted by Scrapbook yesterday. Stephen Greenhalgh will now be forced to quit as a councillor in Hammersmith and Fulham if he is to accept a role as Boris’ deputy mayor for policing.
Despite briefing to the Evening Standard on Greenhalgh’s appointment yesterday, the official announcement was delayed for hours after awkward questions prompted an examination of whether the role was “politically restricted” — meaning it cannot be performed by a sitting councillor.
But a spokesperson for the London Assembly has now said:
“If you are not a member of the Assembly then the position [of deputy mayor for policing] makes you a member of staff of the Mayor’s office for policing and crime and, therefore, under the rules they cannot be a councillor at the same time. He cannot hold both posts at the same time.”
While some hacks claimed that reforms in the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act would prevent a similar cockup to that surrounding the appointment of Boris’ planning advisor in 2008, it seems that the legislation still applies rules on political restrictions as follows:
“In this section a reference to a person holding a politically restricted post under a local authority includes a reference to every member of the staff of an elected local policing body, except for a deputy police and crime commissioner.”
The rules will prevent Greenhalgh from cashing in twice — topping up his full-time deputy mayor salary with councillor allowances.