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Chief executive of councils to retire
9:20am Wednesday 4th December 2013 in News
A meeting of the Weymouth and Portland management committee was asked to approve proposals to set up a joint appointment panel to recruit a replacement for the role.
The post occupied by Mr Clarke currently pays between £110,000 to £114,999.
The proposals will also be put before West Dorset District councillors.
But speaking at the meeting yesterday borough councillor Ian Roebuck said the committee was being asked to simply assume that a new chief executive is needed.
He said: “We do not often have the opportunity of looking at this and I don’t think we should miss it.”
Coun Roebuck said he is ‘impressed’ with what the management team has achieved.
But he added: “I’m reluctant to assume that we just go back to the way we worked before.
“Do we need a chief executive and if so, what should be the job description?”
But Coun Peter Chapman, who chaired the meeting, said the role is ‘absolutely essential’.
He said: “An awful lot of powers are delegated to officers.
“There are three directors and, with the best will in the world, they are not always going to agree on a way forward.
“That’s the point of having a chief executive. It pulls everyone together in one direction.”
Coun Ian Bruce also supported the proposal.
He said: “I would not be keen to try to remodel what we are doing.
“We have to appreciate that the number of directors has gone down enormously.”
A chief executive would be the ‘driving force’ of the management team, he added.
Councillors approved the proposal on the condition that a joint appointment panel considers the option of not appointing a new chief executive.
The report prepared for the management committee stated that David Clarke has formally announced he is to retire at the end of April next year.
An appointments panel would be made up of an equal number of councillors from both Weymouth and Portland Borough and West Dorset District Councils.
Coun Chapman said: “May I take this opportunity to thank David for all his hard work.”
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