Joe Anderson
Anderson in 2010
1st Mayor of Liverpool
In office
4 May 2012 – 10 May 2021[a]
DeputyPaul Brant[1]
Roz Gladden
Ann O'Byrne
Wendy Simon
Lynnie Hinnigan[2]
Preceded byOffice created
Succeeded byJoanne Anderson
Leader of Liverpool City Council
In office
6 May 2010 – 4 May 2012
DeputyPaul Brant
Preceded byWarren Bradley
Succeeded byOffice abolished
Councillor for Liverpool City Council
In office
7 May 1998 – 4 May 2012
WardAbercromby (1998–04)
Riverside (2004–12)
Preceded byJ. Hackett
Succeeded byHetty Wood
Personal details
Born
Joseph Anderson

(1958-01-24) 24 January 1958 (age 63)
Liverpool, England
Political partyIndependent
Other political
affiliations
Labour (Suspended)
Alma materLiverpool John Moores University
ProfessionSocial worker, seafarer
Websitewww.joeanderson.co
joeforliverpool.com
^a Deputy Mayor Wendy Simon exercised the powers and duties of the office of Mayor of Liverpool from 10 December 2020 to 10 May 2021 while Anderson temporarily stood down.

Joseph Anderson, OBE (born 24 January 1958) is a British politician who served as the first directly elected Mayor of Liverpool from 2012 to 2021. A member of the Labour Party until his suspension in November 2020, he served as Leader of Liverpool City Council from 2010 to 2012.

Anderson was the leader of Liverpool City Council from the 2010 Council election until the 2012 Mayoral election.[3] He was elected Mayor of Liverpool on 3 May 2012, winning with 57% of the vote. He won a second term in May 2016 with 52.6% of the vote.[4]

He was also on the board of directors at Liverpool Vision, an Urban Regeneration Company within the city.[5] He represented Liverpool City Council as a member of the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority. In December 2020, Anderson temporarily stood down as Liverpool mayor[6] after being arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit bribery and witness intimidation.[7] He was also suspended from the Labour Party.

Early life

Joe Anderson was born in Liverpool on 24 January 1958. His mother was a cleaner at an office, while his father was in the Merchant Navy. He lived near the city centre during his early life, attending St Vincent Primary School and St Martins Secondary School.[8] He joined the Merchant Navy when he left school and later worked for P&O Ferries, as well being a steward in the National Union of Seamen. He then attended Liverpool John Moores University as a mature student and obtained a postgraduate diploma in social work, allowing him to become a full-time social worker at Chesterfield High School in Crosby.[8]

Political career

Early political career (1998–2005)

Anderson was elected as a city councillor in 1998, first representing the Abercromby ward. In 2003, he became the Leader of the Labour group on Liverpool City Council, and in 2010 became the leader of the council, when Labour gained a majority of seats in the city.[8]

Previously he was on the board of the Liverpool Culture Company, a group involved in developing a programme of events for Liverpool's year as European Capital of Culture in 2008. However, he resigned this position in 2007 after stating his concern at the lack of community involvement in planned events, alleging that an elitist attitude was developing among the board.[9]

Anderson was, along with Liverpool Riverside MP Louise Ellman, involved with the campaign to free Michael Shields after his arrest and subsequent imprisonment in Bulgaria in 2005.[10][11]

Recent years

In December 2015, Anderson was appointed as Leader of the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority. This was not a conventional election, but a joint decision by council leaders of neighbouring local authorities.

In May 2016, he announced his intention to run for the Labour Party nomination for the Mayor of the Liverpool City Region position.[8] In the selection contest, he finished second to then-Liverpool Walton MP Steve Rotheram,[12] who went on to win the election in May 2017. Anderson continued in his position as the Mayor of Liverpool.

In May 2017, Anderson sought selection as a Labour candidate to be the MP for the Liverpool Walton constituency, but lost to then-Unite the Union official Dan Carden. Anderson issued a statement claiming: "Today we were reminded that the Labour Party is not always a meritocracy... after [the General Election] there will be more to say."[13]

Controversies

Matters associated with David McElhinney

In opposition, Anderson had been critical of the joint venture between Liverpool City Council and British Telecom (BT), called LDL. However, on becoming Council Leader, one of Anderson's first moves was to appoint David McElhinney as temporary chief executive of the council for the six-month period while the council was renegotiating its contract with BT. McElhinney was Chief Executive of LDL at the same time.

Cherie Booth QC was engaged to provide legal advice regarding the potential for conflict of interest. The LDL contract was extended, although it was subsequently terminated when it came to light that McElhinney's payments from a second council (Lancashire County Council) were under investigation. McElhinney and others were arrested as part of an investigation into allegations of conspiring to pervert the course of justice and intimidating witnesses.[14]

Anderson was interviewed by police under caution in November 2017.[15][16][17][18]

Case against Chesterfield High School and spending by council lawyers

In April 2015, Anderson brought legal proceedings against Chesterfield High School, claiming he had been unfairly dismissed from his role as a 'social inclusion mentor', despite not having worked at the school for two years. It transpired that he had continued to receive an annual salary of £4,500 from the school during his working absence. Anderson lost part of his case at the first hearing and Chesterfield High school requested Anderson pay back a portion of the money he had received.[19] The case attracted press attention when it was revealed Anderson had instructed Liverpool City Council lawyers to work on the case, while it was described as a private employment matter. The council had spent over £89,500 from public funds to support Anderson during the employment tribunal, according to information released following a Freedom of Information Act request.[20]

The employment tribunal found Anderson had been unfairly dismissed "because proper processes had not been followed" but that the schools' governors were "entitled to terminate his employment because the pupils were not getting any benefit". Anderson appealed that decision to the Employment Appeals Tribunal, however the appeal was dismissed. In summing up, Judge Serota said:[19]

“[Mr Anderson] was entitled to receive almost £80,000 per annum from Liverpool for his role as elected mayor, yet also procured a payment (albeit modest) from public funds for which he provided, and was not expected to provide any service.

“It was, more likely, considered to be a reverse form for a zero hours contract, whereby the [school] was bound to make payment of salary but [Mr Anderson] was not bound to provide any services.

“It is certainly fairly arguable that this arrangement may strike members of the public as constituting a misapplication of public monies.

“I asked Mr Morgan (Mr Anderson’s counsel) on several occasions what benefits there might be that accrued to the [school] for the payments and for preserving [Mr Anderson’s] post for an indeterminate period.

“The only answer that I received was that it gave ‘kudos’ to the school to be associated with the Mayor of Liverpool.”

Arrest

In December 2020, Anderson was one of five men arrested as part of an investigation into building and development contracts in Liverpool.[21][22] He was subsequently suspended from the Labour Party. Also arrested was Derek Hatton, a former deputy leader of the council.[23] On 10 December 2020, Anderson announced that he was temporarily stepping aside from his duties, but would not stand down as Mayor of Liverpool.[23]

On 31 December 2020, Anderson announced that he would not seek re-election as Mayor of Liverpool in the 2021 election, saying that "it would be in the best interests of the Labour Party to select a new candidate for the mayoral election".[24]

Personal life

Anderson is a lifelong Everton F.C. fan, and spoke of his desire to see the club remain in the city, in opposition to the now-defunct Kirkby Project.[25]

Anderson was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2012 Queen's Birthday Honours List for services to local government and the community.[26][27]

Anderson lost his brother to COVID-19 in October 2020.[28]

References

  1. ^ "Changes to Council Cabinet". Liverpool Express. Liverpool Express. Archived from the original on 1 March 2021. Retrieved 16 February 2021.
  2. ^ Council, Liverpool City. "Mayor of Liverpool". Liverpool City Council. Archived from the original on 22 October 2021. Retrieved 25 October 2021.
  3. ^ "Labour sweeps to power in Liverpool after 12 years of Lib Dem rule". Liverpool Echo. Archived from the original on 10 October 2012. Retrieved 7 May 2010.
  4. ^ "Liverpool mayoral election: Joe Anderson wins second term". BBC News. 6 May 2016. Archived from the original on 1 January 2021. Retrieved 4 December 2020.
  5. ^ "Liverpool Vision – Board". Liverpool Vision. Archived from the original on 11 April 2009. Retrieved 7 May 2010.
  6. ^ "Joe Anderson steps down as mayor following arrest". Independent. 10 December 2020. Archived from the original on 10 December 2020. Retrieved 14 December 2020.
  7. ^ "Mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson arrested in building contracts probe". LBC. Archived from the original on 4 December 2020. Retrieved 4 December 2020.
  8. ^ a b c d Susanna Rustin, "Joe Anderson, Liverpool Mayor: 'It’s not about big hitters, like Andy Burnham'" Archived 3 January 2018 at the Wayback Machine, The Guardian, 1 June 2016, accessed 2 January 2018.
  9. ^ "Wine and Canápes". BBC News. Archived from the original on 18 September 2007. Retrieved 7 May 2010.
  10. ^ "Graham Sankey held over attack on Joe Anderson". icLiverpool. Archived from the original on 26 July 2010. Retrieved 7 May 2010.
  11. ^ "Jailed Liverpool fan Michael Shields pardoned". Reuters. 9 September 2009. Archived from the original on 17 September 2009. Retrieved 7 May 2010.
  12. ^ Frances Perraudin, "Corbyn ally named as candidate for Liverpool city region mayor " Archived 3 January 2018 at the Wayback Machine, The Guardian, 10 August 2016, accessed 2 January 2018.
  13. ^ pinned tweet Archived 25 October 2021 at the Wayback Machine from his official Twitter account 9 May 2017
  14. ^ Thorp, Liam (24 November 2017). "Arrested council chief executive has bail extended again". Liverpool Echo. Archived from the original on 4 December 2020. Retrieved 4 December 2020.
  15. ^ "Liverpool mayor grilled by police under caution over fraud probe". www.publicsectorexecutive.com. Archived from the original on 4 December 2020. Retrieved 4 December 2020.
  16. ^ Thorp, Liam (1 February 2018). "Calls for Mayor Joe Anderson to 'step aside' after police caution interview". Liverpool Echo. Archived from the original on 4 February 2018. Retrieved 3 February 2018.
  17. ^ "Liverpool mayor 'interviewed under caution' over fraud probe". 1 February 2018. Archived from the original on 26 January 2019. Retrieved 4 December 2020 – via www.bbc.co.uk.
  18. ^ "Liverpool Mayor quizzed under police caution". ITV News. Archived from the original on 16 July 2019. Retrieved 4 December 2020.
  19. ^ a b "Liverpool Echo – 15 Apr 2015". Archived from the original on 21 January 2021. Retrieved 5 April 2020.
  20. ^ Davies, Helen (7 September 2015). "Calls for City Mayor to pay back £89,000 of public money used for legal fees". Liverpool Echo. Archived from the original on 4 December 2020. Retrieved 4 December 2020.
  21. ^ "Five arrested as part of fraud investigation". www.merseyside.police.uk. Archived from the original on 4 December 2020. Retrieved 4 December 2020.
  22. ^ Clarence-Smith, Louisa (6 December 2020). "Liverpool mayor Joe Anderson arrested by police in bribery inquiry". The Times. Archived from the original on 6 December 2020. Retrieved 6 December 2020.
  23. ^ a b "Liverpool mayor Joe Anderson steps aside amid bribery probe". BBC News. 10 December 2020. Archived from the original on 10 December 2020. Retrieved 10 December 2020.
  24. ^ "Joe Anderson: Liverpool mayor in police probe will not seek re-election". BBC. Archived from the original on 31 December 2020. Retrieved 1 January 2021.
  25. ^ "City council accused over 'shame' of Everton move". icLiverpool. 19 July 2007. Archived from the original on 16 May 2011. Retrieved 7 May 2010.
  26. ^ "No. 60173". The London Gazette (Supplement). 16 June 2012. p. 8.
  27. ^ "BBC News – Mayor appointed OBE in Queen's Birthday Honours list". BBC News. 1 January 1970. Archived from the original on 8 November 2015. Retrieved 16 June 2012.
  28. ^ "Brother of Liverpool mayor Joe Anderson dies with Covid". BBC News. 17 October 2020. Archived from the original on 4 December 2020. Retrieved 4 December 2020.
Political offices Preceded byWarren Bradley Leader of Liverpool City Council 2010–2012 Succeeded byOffice Abolished New creation Mayor of Liverpool 2012–2021 Succeeded byWendy Simon Incumbent