City of York Council

Committee Minutes


Staffing Matters and Urgency Committee


26 March 2024


Councillors Douglas (Chair), Kilbane (Vice-Chair), Lomas, Healey (Substitute for Councillor Ayre) and Waller (Substitute for Councillor Widdowson)



In attendance

Councillors Ayre, and Widdowson


Ian Floyd – Chief Operating Officer

Claire Waind – HR Manager



28.        Declarations of Interest


At this point in the meeting, Members were asked to declare if

they had any personal interests not included on the Register of

Interests or any prejudicial or disclosable pecuniary interests

that they might have had in the business on the agenda. None were declared.





29.        Exclusion of Press and Public


Resolved: That the press and public be excluded from the

meeting during the consideration of the Confidential Annex to Agenda Item 5 (Proposed New Chief Officer Structure) on the grounds that they contained information relating to individuals and the financial affairs of particular persons. This information is classed as exempt under Paragraphs 1, 2 and 3 of Schedule 12A to Section 100A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as revised by the Local Government (Access to Information) (Variation) Order 2006).





30.        Minutes


Resolved: That the minutes of the Staffing Matters and Urgency Committee held on 22 January 2024 be approved and then signed by the Chair as a correct record.







31.        Public Participation


It was reported that there had been no registrations to speak at

the meeting under the Council’s Public Participation Scheme.




32.        Proposed New Chief Officer Structure


The Chief Operating Officer (COO) and HR Manager presented the report and reported that there had been extensive consultation with Directors and Heads of Service, and the proposal set out a two-stage senior management review process. Feedback from the consultation was positive and there was support for the Directorates of Children and Education, Adults and Integration, and Public Health receiving no changes within the current proposal, as well as for the proposed changes within the finance directorate, and the assimilation of Housing, and Community Services.


The COO noted an amendment from the original proposal, presented to the committee on 26 January 2024, highlighting that it was now proposed that a City Development directorate be established alongside a directorate of Transport and Environment.


The COO suggested that following consultation, Planning could be placed under either the directorate of City Development, or Transport and Environment. Members discussed the potential for a conflict to arise with Planning sitting with Infrastructure Development, under City Development as stated within the report’s proposals.


In response to questions from members, the COO and HR Manager confirmed that:


·               References had been made within this report, and the report to the committee on 22 January 2024, to two Local Government Association (LGA) reports: Of which one was an informal discussion relating to City of York Council’s senior management structures – there had been considerations of reducing layers of management in some areas following this report. The second report referenced was a draft Peer Review which was had not been published at the time of the meeting, and was focussed on broader strategic issues.

·               As some directorates were staying the same, and some were adopting new responsibilities, time considerations would be taken to allow for directorates to fully understand new services.

·               Stage 2 of the process would be done in such a way to achieve savings, as well as reducing layers, and reviewing areas that need additional investment and resourcing.

·               Although the Directorates of Children and Education, Adults and Integration, and Public Health were exempt from changes during stage 1, all senior management would be included in considerations of stage 2.

·               Within the report, the Directorate of Place had seen a greater level of restructuring than others due to a lack of statutory roles in comparison to other directorates.

·               A Directorate of People’s Services had been considered in the past, and this was found to be unworkable due to a large proportion of expenditure needing to be allocated to one directorate, and difficulties in recruiting a director at the necessary salary.

·               Within the report, the Directorate of Governance was now the same as when the directorate was established in 2019, with the removal of changes to the directorate made in 2021.

[The committee entered into private session at 6:40pm for the consideration of the Confidential Annex of the report, and reconvened into public session 7:10pm].


The Chair moved, and it was seconded by Councillor Kilbane, that the committee would:


·               Amend the proposals set out in Appendix 2 of the report, to move the role of Planning to sit underneath the Director of Transport and Environment.

The committee voted on the motion and the votes were as follows:


3 members voted for the motion (Cllrs Douglas, Kilbane, Lomas).

2 members voted against the motion (Cllrs Healey, Waller) and the motion was declared CARRIED, and it was:


Resolved: That the above motion be approved.








The committee then voted on the amended recommendations of the report and the votes were as follows:


3 members voted for the recommendations (Cllrs Douglas, Kilbane, Lomas).

0 members voted against the recommendations.

2 members abstained from the vote on the recommendations (Cllrs Healey, Waller), and it was,




That the Staffing Matters and Urgency Committee;


i.          Approved the new chief officer structure as set out within Appendix 2 (noting the proposed statutory officer roles), subject to the role of Planning being moved to the Director of Transport and Environment, from the Director of City Development.


ii.         Approved specifically as part of the new structure the deletion of the following 5 posts:


·                Director of Customer and Communities

·                Corporate Director of Place

·                Director of Economy, Regeneration and Housing

·                Director of Environment, Transport and Planning

·                Chief Finance Officer (Section 151 Officer)


iii.       Approved the creation of the following 4 posts:


·                Director of Transport and Environment

·                Director of City Development

·                Director of Housing and Community Services

·                Director of Finance (Section 151 Officer)


iv.       Agreed to a chief officer appointment panel for any roles that require a form of assessment, and to note that Council’s Management of Change processes will be followed to determine appointments to the revised structure and new roles.





v.        Noted the potential financial implications of potential redundancies, including redundancy and pension strain where relevant, as set out in the Confidential Annex, and note that any final redundancy payments will require further approval by the committee.


vi.       Noted the revenue saving from the proposals relating to director roles of £165,000, prior to the consideration of any redundancy costs.


vii.     Noted that any redundancy costs will purely be those which arise due to terms and conditions of employment, these being the entitlement to redundancy in accordance with the Council’s redundancy scheme, together with any entitlement to pension that may arise from a redundancy on grounds of efficiency.






Cllr Douglas, Chair

[The meeting started at 5.51pm and finished at 7.18pm].




























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