Clear out council - call

FILEY town councillor John Haxby has called for the sacking of every head of department at Scarborough Council in an outspoken attack on the council's record.

Cllr Haxby was responding to news of a management shake-up which has reduced the number of departments at the authority from 12 to eight.

New departments include "transformational management" – which councillors questioned the meaning of – and the re-instatement of technical services.

At Wednesday night's meeting of the town council, Cllr Haxby said: "They're reducing the number of heads, but they're keeping the same number of old dinosaurs.

"I'd have loved it if they'd sacked every one of them and started from scratch. There would be no preconceived ideas and the focus would be on the whole of the borough and not just looking at tourism in Scarborough."

Town and borough councillor Sam Cross said: "There's lots of Scarborough councillors unhappy about the revised structure and there's still ongoing discussions about that."

But Cllr Sue Bradney warned: "Be careful what you wish for. We could get rid of them all, then get a lot worse."

Cllr David Murton said he could not see where town and parish councils fitted into the picture. But he wondered if the changes would mean anything to "the man in the street".

On the positive side, Cllr Haxby said he believed chief executive Jim Dillon had been "10 times" more responsive to the town council than his predecessor John Trebble.

Councillors also sang the praises of current head of street scene Bernard Goulding for his role as liaison officer between Scarborough Council and Filey Town Council.

Cllr Aileen Newbury said: "We've had a brilliant liaison with him and I'd like this council to fight to keep a liaison officer."

In an earlier statement, Scarborough Council's chief executive Jim Dillon said the management shake-up would save taxpayers "more than 1 million over a five-year period".

The dozen heads of department were invited to reapply for the new positions – five were given jobs but at least five others opted to take early retirement, including Mr Goulding.

Mr Dillon said: "The council is continually looking for more

efficient and modern ways of working and there aren't many local authorities our size with 12 heads of department."

The officers taking up the new posts are Paul Cresswell (finance), Ian Anderson (legal services), former head of engineering and harbour services John Riby (technical services), former head of environmental health services Andy Skelton (community services) and Roger Kaye, who becomes head of human resources and performance (formerly human resources).

Three other positions have yet to be filled – head of transformational management, head of tourism and culture and head of development.