All change at the top for council leadership team
Published on 12th July 2013
Proposals to be discussed by councillors on 22 July will set out how the senior management team at Cheltenham Borough Council could change, with a phased restructure coming into effect in 2014.
Under the new arrangements, the chief executive would lead a team of three, made up of a deputy chief executive, director of corporate resources and director of environmental and regulatory services. Subject to consultation, two posts would be made redundant on top of the loss of the director for health and wellbeing (the latter due to the formation of a leisure and culture trust which would be run independently, commencing April 2014, assuming all proposals are agreed).
These changes are possible now because Cheltenham Borough Council is a very different organisation to the council it was five years ago. They are set against continuing work to streamline services and increase efficiency. Since 2008, the council has implemented significant changes to save costs whilst protecting services. A number of shared services have been established in partnership with neighbouring authorities, including for instance legal, building control, finance, HR, ICT and waste collection (including street cleansing and parks/garden maintenance).
The number of staff delivering direct services as employees of the council has subsequently reduced from 640 full time equivalents (fte) to 350 fte. The costs of direct services being delivered by the council have also reduced over this time, from £19.5m to around £10m and more work is being done which will reduce these numbers further.
Andrew North, chief executive said: “We have always been careful in the way we spend public money and through a number of measures we have increased our efficiency, effectiveness and value for money. With significant central government cuts, it makes sense to consider our future as a much smaller organisation, managing a diverse set of relationships with partners but continuing to offer some direct delivery where necessary. A smaller sized council means we can reduce overheads in areas such as office space, support services and senior management; it also means that services delivered to council tax payers are protected. The financial impact on any decisions made will be critical to the long term future of the council.’’
If councillors agree to the proposals, a formal internal consultation process will follow and the changes will take a phased approach through 2014.
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