- Published: Thursday, 19 January 2012 16:35
- Written by Jonathan Walker
The order which forces Birmingham to hold a referendum on creating a directly elected mayor was approved by the House of Commons today - although it was formally opposed by the Labour Party.
Shadow local government minister Chris Williamson demanded a division and then voted against the measure, which obliged the city to hold a referendum on May 3.
The order was discussed at a Commons delegated legislation committee, which is a Commons committee set up to consider detailed changes to the law which do not require an Act of Parliament. The general power to force cities to hold referendums is contained in the Localism Act, which became law last year, and the Government has drawn up orders for each city which are now being considered in committees, one at a time.