The Leader explained that the Council was required to have in place a Head of Paid Service and other statutory posts referred to in the report. It was necessary, therefore, for interim arrangements to be in place whilst the Council undertook the process to appoint a permanent Chief Executive.
It was proposed that Paul Thomas be appointed as the Interim Chief Executive which would encompass the roles of Head of Paid Service, the Electoral Registration Officer and the Returning Officer based on the Job Description attached as Appendix 1 to the report, which Job Description had been agreed in its entirety by the Employment Committee when the former Chief Executive was appointed.
Due to the proposed changes in Paul Thomas’s role, it was also proposed that Ken Lyon, the Assistant Chief Executive (Housing Delivery) be appointed to the post of Interim Strategic Director – Growth.
Councillor Wood confirmed that he agreed with the proposed interim appointments and asked whether there was a review or end date for these appointments.
The Leader explained that the process to appoint a permanent Chief Executive would take some time as was usual with appointments of this nature. He was content to keep Group Leaders and Employment Committee informed as the process developed.
The Chairman asked whether Paul Thomas might be over-loaded in the proposed interim post.
The Leader explained that it was essential to relieve Paul Thomas of his responsibilities as Strategic Director – Growth to enable him to fully focus on the roles and responsibilities of an Interim Chief Executive. That was why it was proposed to move Ken Lyon in to the role of Interim Strategic Director – Growth so he would focus on the responsibilities of that post.
Councillor Kelly asked whether the Committee should look at the reasons for the departure of the former Chief Executive.
Lee Sirdifield explained that was not within the remit of the Committee.
Councillor Kelly also asked whether the Council conducted exit interviews.
Lee Sirdifield confirmed that the Council carried out exit interviews but this operational function was not something that had been considered previously by the Committee.
The Chairman exercised her discretion to allow Councillor Baxter to ask a question. Councillor Baxter asked whether Ken Lyon would be in charge of the ‘Council side’ arrangements in respect of InvestSK and whether were the Committee was satisfied that he had the appropriate skills to fulfil that role.
The Leader explained that the Growth portfolio had been carefully considered. He had discussed any developmental areas with both Paul Thomas and Ken Lyon. He was confident that they were both able to perform the proposed roles.
The Leader also explained that he and the Deputy Leader continued as Directors on the Board of InvestSK. There was currently a vacancy on the Board and it would be for the Council to appoint to that vacancy.
Councillor Baxter clarified that he was not saying anything about the capabilities of either Paul Thomas or Ken Lyon but was seeking assurance on the proposed appointments.
IT WAS AGREED:
· Subject to the decision of Council in relation to the appointment of the Interim Chief Executive, to appoint Ken Lyon as the Interim Strategic Director – Growth with effect from 1 August 2019 until such time as permanent arrangements were in place for a permanent Chief Executive/Head of Paid Service.