Mayor Boris Johnson is demonstrating a Macavity-like ability to vanish from Metropolitan Police Authority meetings before trouble breaks out. He left today after the first hour of his second meeting since he took over as Chair of the Authority. This left Kit Malthouse, his Representative on Earth for Policing, to handle MPA members’ worries about the 200-plus pages on the agenda dealing with the proposed business plan and budget for the Metropolitan Police.
Surprise, surprise! People didn’t feel there had been enough discussion about the contents and implications of the proposals. So nothing new there then! And just for a change the papers, although voluminous, were found to be rather opaque.
James Cleverly (a Conservative member of the London Assembly) tried unsuccessfully to pour oil on troubled waters with a convoluted analogy about knitting. Finally, with Steve O’Connell (another Conservative member of the London Assembly and MPA Finance Chair) looking grumpy, Kit Malthouse sensibly conceded an extra meeting.
At least the Mayor stayed long enough to join in the tributes to Sir Ian Blair’s Commissionership….