Page last updated at 07:30 GMT, Monday, 15 September 2008 08:30 UK

Referendum campaign groups set up

Stoke Town Hall
The referendum is due to take place on 23 October

Two groups have been set up to campaign for the different options in next month's referendum on how Stoke-on-Trent should be run.

However, despite their differences in opinion the two groups share the same name - People's Choice.

The government told Stoke to change its existing system where the elected mayor and chief executive make all decisions.

It offered it the option of an elected mayor with a cabinet or an elected council leader with a cabinet.

The public will be asked which option they prefer on 23 October.

Complex issue

The "no" campaign, calling for the elected mayor and cabinet system, is being run by former councillor Paul Breeze.

Current councillor Mike Barnes, is leading the "yes" campaign, which is calling for a leader and cabinet.

Both groups have accused each other of choosing the same name to confuse the public over what is already a complex issue.

If the city votes yes to the elected leader system, it will be installed from May 2009.

However, if the system is rejected, the elected mayor and cabinet system will be introduced.

The city is currently the only local authority in England to have its existing political system.


SEE ALSO
Referendum over city's government
11 Sep 08 |  Staffordshire
Opponents 'would need law change'
27 Jul 08 |  Staffordshire
City chief defends quit decision
24 Jul 08 |  Staffordshire
Quitting council boss criticised
23 Jul 08 |  Staffordshire
Mayor 'No' vote would be ignored
19 Jun 08 |  Staffordshire
Elected mayor in defence of role
13 Jul 08 |  Staffordshire

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