Thursday, 8 March 2012

Whither Heather? Senior City Council post scrapped in restructuring

The  £77,300 p.a.  post  of  Deputy Chief Executive at Lancaster City Council has been scrapped after two years, leaving its occupant, Ms Heather McManus, redundant. It's not yet known if Ms McManus will be redeployed at Lancaster City Council, so we'll skip the eulogy for now, as a search for her name on this blog will tell you pretty much everything we could put in it. Your contributions are welcome just in case, however.

A query from Virtual Lancaster to the City Council, as to why the new management  structure so recently implemented was being dismantled, obtained the following reply from Chief Exec Mark Cullinan:

"The structure was introduced almost two years ago and much has changed in public services that has led to continuous organisational change in the council


"The council has implemented a series of organisational changes recently to enable further efficiencies to be achieved."


See minutes of Personnel Committee meeting (held on 28 February) for revised senior management structure - http://committeeadmin.lancaster.gov.uk/ieAgenda.aspx?A=5871"

Sadly, when we followed the handy link supplied by Mr Cullinan, we found the item 'Senior Management Restructure' was restricted from public view. However we did come across this diagram, which may or may not be the new structure proposal.

The restrictions on these agenda items suggest that further changes at senior management level may soon be in the offing. A number of shared service agreements have been negotiated with neighbouring authorities over the last year leading to cuts in staffing levels and further efficiencies are indicated.

Today's Lancaster Guardian Comment section (p18) was keen to mention the redundancy terms that other Town Hall staff at less senior grades have had to accept recently, asking austerely whether the same or more generous terms are being offered to senior management.  They have about as much chance of finding out from the Council as Ms McManus has of receiving several wild horses and a flying pig but perhaps she will be kind enough to enlighten them in due course.

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