Introduction

The first metro mayor of the West Midlands will be elected with a vision for the city and clear strategic, deliverable policies to meet it. The challenge and workload will be considerable, with powers and expectations ranging from delivering policy, to establishing the institutions and capacity for effective city region governance. This briefing offers the metro mayor three priorities that address the biggest issues facing the West Midlands.

A ‘quick win’ will help the mayor to set the tone for delivery right from the start. Signalling change quickly will show what the metro mayor is able to do for the city region and build trust. The best of these policies are high profile and valuable to residents.

Strategic decisions form the framework for delivering the metro mayor’s vision over their term. As such,the metro mayor will have the power to take the decisions that will make the most of the new geography of governance. While the mayor will be keen to show progress towards their vision, strategic decisions will often take longer to show outcomes, therefore careful evaluation is needed to allow for flexibility and to demonstrate the effects.

A long term vision for the city will be the key election platform – it is what the mayor is working towards while in office. This should be ambitious, but reflect the real needs and potential of the city. Some aspects of the vision will be achievable within the mayor’s term in office, while others will build momentum or signal a change in direction. It is important to be clear and strike the balance of where each policy lies on this spectrum.