On the dual mandate

There seems a bit of confusion on the issue of the dual mandate, of MLAs also being elected councillors. According to Peter Hain’s statement, “Jeff Rooker has discussed this with the major political parties and they are agreed that, following the resumption of Devolution – and not before – the issue of the dual mandate should be quickly addressed in legislation.[emphasis added]”.. that would be legislation through the Assembly presumably.. when, or if, it is resurrected.. and assuming the parties actually do agree..From Peter Hain’s speech [page 4 of the PDF file]

Jeff Rooker will be saying more about councillors including a commitment to a more appropriate level of remuneration and a severance scheme to recognise long-serving councillors who opt not to stand at the next Local Government elections. Finally, on Local Government, I want to turn to the issue of what is known as the dual mandate.

At present 69 of the 108 MLAs are sitting Councillors. In the future, the Assembly will have a role in overseeing the performance and financing of local government. I believe, in these circumstances, there is an unacceptable conflict of interest if the same people are sitting in both the Assembly and Councils.

Jeff Rooker has discussed this with the major political parties and they are agreed that, following the resumption of Devolution – and not before – the issue of the dual mandate should be quickly addressed in legislation.