Agenda item

Structural Review (Agenda Item 9)

Report of the Chief Executive.

Minutes:

The Chief Executive presented this report, which sought Council’s approval for a revised management structure.

He explained that since the adoption of the Council’s current management structure in December 2008, two of the Council’s Chief Officers (the Deputy Chief Executive, Mr T. Leader, and the Director of Transformation, Mr. P. Calkin) had either left or decided to leave.

Bearing in mind the possible reorganisation of local government in Norfolk and the possible effects this could have on senior recruitment, the recommendation before Council was for an internal recruitment process, with appointments made on an interim basis only at this stage. They would be reviewable on a six-monthly basis (with the exception of any appointee who already held Chief Officer status). A further review would then be undertaken following a decision on the LGR.

It was proposed that the new structure should take effect from 10 August 2009 and, subject to the Council’s ratification of these proposals, interviews had been scheduled for the week commencing 3 August.

Adoption of the proposed restructuring would result in revenue savings of about £100,000 per full financial year. It was proposed that £50,000 of these savings should be retained within the Council’s overall budget for the time being, in order to support the development of the contracts management function and the Regeneration and Planning Directorate.

The Chief Executive drew attention to the fact that, aside from the regrouping of services, it was also proposed that:

o        the Licensing function should be moved to the Services Directorate;

 

o        Emergency Planning and Business Continuity should be moved to People First; and

 

o        Housing and Environmental Health should be merged to become a single service area.

He confirmed that the proposed management structure would allow maximum flexibility in terms of future local government developments, since the Council could decide to either confirm key appointments or else open them up to the external market at the next scheduled six-monthly review.

It was felt that there was also a need to protect senior officers: if the LGR went ahead, there could be a collapse of management structure and it was important to preserve the Council’s position in terms of management appointments as far as possible. There was also a chance that in the event of there being a Unitary/Greater Norfolk arrangement, then there could essentially be no change involved.

A Member felt that it was important that senior posts should be opened to the wider market: they should not just be internal appointments, even on a temporary basis.

The Chief Executive drew attention to paras 3.3.2 and 3.3.3 of his report, highlighting that the proposal did allow for flexibility, for example in the light of a final decision on LGR or any other changes, such as increased shared services etc, which might lead to a reduction in the number of chief officer posts required across the county.

RESOLVED

 

1)            to adopt the revised management structure, as detailed at Annex A to the report, with effect from 10 August 2009;

 

2)            to conduct internal recruitment only; and

 

3)      to allow any savings identified to be retained.

 

 

Supporting documents: