NRF funding comes with strings

Birmingham has been promised 32 million pounds in Neighbourhood Renewal Fund grants on the condition that the council sack John Hemming, MP, as chair of the Birmingham Strategic Partnership.

Neighbourhood Renewal is an initiative to promote partnership between the council, police and other local bodies to improve neighbourhoods. This covers a wide range of activities including not just repairing damaged infrastructure but also projects to prevent vandalism, graphiti and petty crime by youths. Birmingham Strategic Partnership (BSP), not to be confused with Business Transformation Straegic Partnership (BTSP), is a big part of this.

John Hemming, in addition to being an MP for Yardly, is also a councilor for Yardly South and was until recently Deputy Leader of Birmingham City council. He was one of the key drivers behind the exposure of the postal ballot problems in the last round of local elections which lead to several ballots being rerun and two staff in the elections office being suspended. It is widely rumoured that he was also behind the decision by the Chief Exec, Lin Homer, to seek opportunities elsewhere.

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