2:09pm Monday 2nd June 2014
By Sophia Sleigh
Two posts have been cut from the council’s cabinet team as part of the reshuffle.
Cabinet member for economic development and business has been axed as part of cost cutting measures along with the post of planning and transportation.
Shaftesbury councillor and former economic development and business member James Cousins posted on his blog last week accusing Wandsworth Council of groupthink after he was ‘gently’ sacked from his post.
Coun Cousins’ responsibilities along with the transport post, held by Russell King who stood down this year, will be distributed among cabinet members – although the future make-up of responsibilities is not yet known.
There are also changes expected to the council’s overview and scrutiny committees which have been referred to as ‘restructuring’ by the council.
At an annual council meeting, on June 9, Wandsworth’s 60 newly elected councillors will be asked to re-elect Councillor Ravi Govindia as their leader.
His new cabinet team includes other changes and additions.
West Putney councillor Steffi Sutters is being promoted to chief whip and will be responsible for communications, replacing Alex Jacob who lost his seat in Bedford Ward.
Jonathan Cook is set to continue as deputy leader and would be cabinet member for community services.
James Maddan will remain in post as cabinet member for adult care and health.
Kathy Tracey will continue as cabinet member for education and children services.
Guy Senior is to retain responsibility for finance and corporate resources while Paul Ellis shall stay in charge of the housing portfolio.
The total number of portfolio holding cabinet posts has been reduced from nine to seven.
Councillor Govindia recently told the Wandsworth Guardian that he had told the chief executive there was nothing in the council that does not need to be looked at in order to make savings.
He said: “This team has a vision for an even stronger Wandsworth where local people have the great services they need and more opportunities to get on in life.
“Over the next four years we will focus on the things that really matter to local people – jobs, affordable housing and investing in great schools where our children can flourish.
"We will also keep our promise to maintain a low council tax so every household has more money to spend on the things they need.”
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