Assembly recommends new chair for London Waste and Recycling Board
The London Assembly has agreed to recommend that the Mayor should proceed with his appointment of James Cleverly to the office of chair of the London Waste and Recycling Board.
The decision follows a confirmation hearing at City Hall on Monday where the assembly questioned Cleverly, assembly member for Bexley and Bromley, about his suitably to replace Boris Johnson as chair of LWaRB.
Johnson announced last month that he planned to “reorganise” his team and intended to step down from his role proposing Cleverly as his successor.
Cleverly, 40, who is currently the Mayor’s youth ambassador, faced questions by the assembly about his plans for LWaRB and outlined his vision for its future.
He said: “Part of me would like to see the waste board become superfluous to be perfectly honest with you.
“Part of me would like to see the relationship between local residents, local authorities and recycling facilities and the funders of recycling facilities to be so smooth and natural that we don’t need a regional government level to sit there prodding people in the ribs saying ‘well you know, why aren’t you stumping up the money, why aren’t you doing this, how can we help you accomplish that?’”
He also cited some of the problems he believes the board has faced so far.
“The problem that I think the London Boroughs have had with the London Waste Board perhaps in the past is that it hasn’t made it clear what it brings to the party and in that noise vacuum perhaps has been the belief that the Waste and Recycling Board is going to do things to the London Boroughs and make the London Boroughs do things that they don’t want to do,” said Cleverly.
“None of these things are going to happen, this is about adding capacity. It is about improving and adding capacity and doing it collaboratively. A large part of what I am going to do hopefully, as chair of the board, is to get out to all the waste authorities around London, properly explain what we are doing as a board, properly explain what we can do to help them as authorities.”
Cleverly was insistent that even thought he doesn’t have a background in waste management, he was an ideal candidate for the role of chair.
He said: “We do not need someone else with that direct waste experience, what we need is someone who is very focused and has experience of getting things delivered. I think right across the spectrum, up to and including the mayor, one of the most fair criticisms of the board is that we have not as yet had much in the way of tangible deliverables.
“We have had some but the clock is ticking, we have got a lot of money we need to be using to provide leverage and we haven’t done it as quickly as I think any of us would like. It’s about getting things delivered and I think on my CV I have got plenty of examples where I get things delivered.”