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Thursday 8 November 2012

Cabinet changes announced at Cheshire East Council


Cheshire East Council’s leadership has taken advantage of the sad resignation of a stalwart councillor to reshuffle the Cabinet.

Hilda Gaddum has decided to step down from her position as Cabinet member in charge of children and family services for family reasons. However, she will remain ward councillor for Sutton, where she has lived for more than 30 years.

Council leader Michael Jones and deputy leader David Brown see it as the perfect opportunity to bring in new faces and also introduce policy development groups as the authority moves towards its position as a policy-led council.

The six new groups (listed below) will be cross party – enabling the elected representatives of local people to influence policies affecting the communities they represent. The groups will have some meetings in private but, importantly, will meet regularly in public to ensure accountability to the public.

These will be complemented by three scrutiny committees (external, internal/corporate and health and wellbeing). Further details on these will be announced shortly.

Councillor Paul Findlow has now joined the Cabinet and will take the corporate policy portfolio. A former leader of Cheshire County Council, Councillor Findlow brings with him much experience in local Government.

Councillor Michael Jones, Leader of Cheshire East Council, said: “Firstly, I would like to pay tribute to Councillor Hilda Gaddum, who has served on this Cabinet since 2010 and given a high standard of committed service and enthusiasm.

“Whilst it is a loss to the Cabinet, it has provided us with a way to reorganise the Cabinet structure and I am delighted to welcome Councillor Findlow to his post, who I am certain will bring a wealth of experience and knowledge to the position.

“When I first became leader, I pledged to make this a more inclusive Council that listened to a wider range of voices. We are a Council that seeks to work in partnership – across the political divide – for the benefit of all the people of Cheshire East.

“The new arrangements will enable far more members to influence policy, which strengthens the democratic process.”

Councillor Findlow is a ward councillor for Prestbury and currently sits on outside organisations such as the Cheshire Police Appointments Joint Committee and the Association for Public Service Excellence (APSE).

He is also a governor at King’s School, Macclesfield, and previously held the children and family services portfolio in Cheshire East Council’s first year (2009-10).

On her resignation, Councillor Gaddum said: “It is with great sadness that I have decided to step down from the Cabinet. I have had some wonderful times and have faced some great challenges but I believe I have taken these on in the best way that I could.

“It has been such a privilege to work with the many officers from children and family services and I would just like to say a huge thank you to all these incredibly hard-working people.

“Now, I would like to spend more time with my family but I am still a councillor and will continue to help the people of Sutton and Cheshire East with the issues that matter to them most.”

Councillor Rachel Bailey will now take on Councillor Gaddum’s vacant Cabinet position as part of the reshuffle. However, she will still be responsible for planning matters.

Councillor Peter Groves is now the chief whip.

The full Cabinet membership and support members are now as follows:

Councillor                Portfolio                                                                    Support member

Michael Jones          Leader                                                           

David Brown             Deputy Leader and Strategic Communities       Lesley Smetham

Rod Menlove                        Environment                                                 Don Stockton/Gail Wait     

Janet Clowes            Health and Adult Social Care                                Stewart Gardiner

Peter Raynes            Finance                                                                     Peter Mason

Paul Findlow                        Corporate Policy                                                      David Marren

Jamie Macrae           Prosperity and Economic Regeneration             Peter Groves

Rachel Bailey           Children and Family Services                               Rhoda Bailey

Barry Moran              Performance                                                             David Marren

Les Gilbert                 Communities and Regulatory Services              Steve Wilkinson

Policy development groups are as follows:

Group                                                                        Chairman                              Vice chairman

Corporate and performance                      Andrew Kolker                      Peter Hayes

Finance                                                         Frank Keegan                      Brendan Murphy

Health and Adult Social Care                    Margaret Simon                   Jos Saunders

Children and Families                                Phil Hoyland                         Ken Edwards

Environment and Prosperity                      Bill Livesley                           Wesley Fitzgerald

Sustainable Communities                         Olivia Hunter                                    Stan Davies

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