Saturday, 15 December 2007

Dail post

This is the daily post take on Thursday's cabinet meeting and a fair reflection of events. Despite promises we have yet to have a coherent explanation from The Tories as to why the want to keep in post folk who have been declared surplus. We will wait.

Sefton Council chief to stay but eight top jobs axed in £600,000 savings cuts

Dec 14 2007 by Liza Williams, Liverpool Daily Post

SEFTON Council’s chief executive will keep his job – but eight other management posts face the axe, a cabinet meeting decided yesterday.
The council had made an offer to chief executive Graham Haywood of redundancy or early retirement in November but it has been withdrawn after a QC ruled it had acted unconstitutionally.
One man whose position is being deleted is deputy chief executive, Alan Moore, who was suspended last month over allegations of misconduct.
It is likely the council’s decision will go to a scrutiny review to finalise the decision.
The news follows an acrimon-ious dispute between Liberal Democrats, Labour and Conser-vatives about the way a major services review was handled.
Lib-Dem council leader Tony Robertson had asked for an independent QC’s report into senior posts, including the decision to offer redundancy to Mr Haywood. In November, the QC reported to the council it acted unconstitutionally in the way it handled a number of dec- isions to “cull” senior officers.
Last night Cllr Robertson said: “The decision is one I support. The reality is that the decision will probably be called in and taken to a Scrutiny Review Committee but I welcome this. The reason problems occurred was because of the lack of scrutiny.”
At a meeting in October a motion was passed following the combined votes of Labour and Conservative councillors agreeing to save £300,000 in 2008/9 by deleting five top posts.
But last night a rival Lib-Dem motion was passed to save £600,000 by deleting eight posts.
The dispute has coincided with the suspension of Mr Moore and an investigation by the Standards Board into the actions of Cllr Debi Jones.
The subject of the investiga-tion is a meeting between the pair which may have broken the council’s code of conduct.
Cllr Jones arranged a meet-ting with Mr Moore which she says was to “inquire about how a company goes about the tendering process.” It is alleged she had “pressed” for a com-pany she was doing freelance work for, PR firm Ampersand, to be considered for contracts, but Cllr Jones denies any wrongdoing. There is no suggestion the company has done anything wrong.