In February, I held a Business Roundtable meeting co-hosted by Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands Combined Authority, and Cllrs. Robert Alden and Randal Brew, Leader and Deputy Leader of the Conservative Group in Birmingham to hear directly from local businesses about their suggestions for the future of Birmingham.
Our city needs a change in how it does things and we wanted to hear about what difficulties people are facing and get their input into our future strategy for the city to better inform us in our actions.
We discussed congestion charge, public transport improvements and network capacity as well as jobs, skills, education and future learning and finally, housing and planning policy within Birmingham City Council.
The meeting was a great success and well attended from a wide variety of businesses across Birmingham. The feedback collected has since been discussed, considered and some ideas incorporated within the Conservative Manifesto. The lasting benefit is the opportunity given to us as elected officials to listen and really hear the day-to-day complexities facing businesses in Birmingham, to build that relationships, and to deepen our understanding of yet another aspect of our roles.
In addition to this Cllr. Robert Alden recently had a meeting with Greg Clark MP, the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and industrial strategy and passed on some of the suggestions and comments from the meeting.
Overall a very good outcome and we now await the publishing of the Conservative Manifesto.