Rugby Conservative group elect new leader

Cllr Michael Stokes
Cllr Michael Stokes
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The Conservative group on Rugby Borough Council has elected a new leader.

Cllr Michael Stokes will be officially named at the next meeting of Rugby Borough Council on September 23, following the resignation of Cllr Craig Humphrey.

Cllr Stokes was chosen at a meeting on Friday (September 5) to lead the Conservative group.

He will now be proposed as leader of Rugby Borough Council at a meeting of all councillors when councillors will vote on the recommendation.

He was first elected in May 2006 and has served as chairman of the borough council’s licensing and safety committee of the crime and disorder committee.

Cllr Stokes said: “It is an honour to have been elected leader of the ruling Conservative group on Rugby Borough Council. We have a strong, award-winning council that everyone in the borough can feel proud of and I will strive to ensure that our excellent record of local government continues.”

Cllr Humphrey resigned as both leader of the council and as a councillor on August 31. Cllr Derek Poole assumed the leader’s responsibilities in the interim.

Independent Councillor for Dunsmore Ward Howard Roberts said: “I warmly congratulate Cllr Stokes on his election as the leader of the Conservative group. He has been left a difficult inheritance by his predecessor - Rugby Borough Council faces three years of projected budget deficits and a senior management team in transition.

“The important constitutional question is whether Cllr Stokes will be given the same enhanced leader status that his predecessor enjoyed. This enhancement, worth over £6,000 a year, should only be approved after a thorough review by councillors.”

The borough council is responsible for services including rubbish collection, housing and parks.