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Politics

All the latest national politics news plus the local issues affecting the Birmingham and West Midlands area.

Coun Robert Alden

Future taxpayers face £1.1bn burden from Birmingham's debt, Tories claim

But after 20 years taxpayers will be spending more on debt, according to Opposition Conservative leader Coun Robert Alden

Chris Kelly loses £500k bet after standing down as MP

Chris Kelly, MP for Dudley South
Tory Chris Kelly is to stand down at the 2015 General Election after becoming MP for Dudley South in 2010

Birmingham councillors told to take £100k pay cut

Birmingham City Council
But council leaders are set to reject the cuts when they meet tomorrow and tell the Independent Remuneration Panel to take another look at councillors’ workloads

I'll switch Birmingham's speed cameras back on, new police boss pledges

A speed camera
New police and crime commissioner David Jamieson said he would be looking at the speed camera issue as a priority

Ed Balls backs Shabana Mahmood after protest at Sainsbury's

Shabana Mahmood
Labour shadow Chancellor supports shadow treasury minister despite her defying party policy by supporting boycott   

Opinion

Scottish students currently get free university tuition

Andrew Whitehead: Scottish independence debate is an education

A major concern of the Scottish universities will be the preservation of their non-EU student fee income, which in 2011/2012 brought in £337m from non-EU course fees.

Chris Game: George Dixon and Birmingham's first School Board elections in 1870

19th century education reformer and politician George Dixon
School boards were empowered to make attendance compulsory for five to 13-year olds, but not until 1880 were they required to.

Neil Elkes: Labour seize the reins of power in Walsall

A voter placing a ballot paper in the ballot box at a polling station
Labour councillors in Walsall saw their 14 years of opposition brought to an abrupt end last week as they seized the reins of power.
Birmingham Council House

Councils catch fraud worth £15.6 million in West Midlands

Officials stopped 10,900 fraud scams aimed at local authorities in one year

Debate kicks off search for a world famous Birmingham landmark

Transforming the BT Tower into a pen nib sculpture was one idea put forward
A public forum has been held to discuss creating a piece of “innovative and highly visible” art which would put Birmingham on the map.

Osborne launches legislation to finally kill off regional development agencies

George Osborne launched a revolution in local government as he abolished the regional development agency and placed local councils in charge of boosting the West Midlands economy, in an emergency budget that slashed spending and drove up taxes.

Coun Robert Alden

Future taxpayers face £1.1bn burden from Birmingham's debt, Tories claim

But after 20 years taxpayers will be spending more on debt, according to Opposition Conservative leader Coun Robert Alden

Peter Shirley: Ministers' parks and open spaces tax proposal

Cannock Chase
Ministers have suggested that people living near parks, and whose houses increase in value because of this, should pay extra tax to contribute to the upkeep of the parks.

Journalists

Graeme Brown
Regional Head of Business
Enda Mullen
Business Reporter
Cillian O’ Brien
Business Reporter
Jon Griffin
Business Reporter
Alison Jones
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Ben Hurst
News Editor
Jonathan Walker
Political Editor