Cabinet will be asked to adopt new procedures and changes in standing orders at their meeting on June 22nd regarding the dismissal of senior staff, including the Chief Executive. Other staff to whom it applies are the Chief Finance Officer and the Monitoring Officer.
In 2012 the then Brent Director of Finance, Chris Heaphy, was suspended over gross misconduct allegations( later withdrawn) shortly after Chief Executive, Gareth Daniel was ousted by Muhammed Butt. LINK
The proposal institutes a Dismissal Advisory Committee which includes'independent persons':
The Chief Operating Officer, who wrote the report, is Lorraine Langham, late of Ofsted and Tower Hamlets.The Council will be required to invite independent persons to form part of a panel in the following priority order:· an independent person who has been appointed by the Council and who is registered as a local government elector in the borough of Brent;· any other independent person who has been appointed by the Council;and· an independent person who has been appointed by another council orother councils.The Council has appointed one independent person to deal with Member Code of Conduct complaints but the 2015 Regulations explicitly allow theCouncil to utilise independent persons appointed by other councils.This is why it is proposed that the Chief Operating Officer be authorised to explore the possibility of sharing independent persons appointed by other councils with a view to establishing a pool of 5 independent persons from which 3 can be selected to form a panelSuch a shared system may be a more cost effective and efficient use of a limited number of independent persons.
Apart from concerns that might arise from the above, there is an Alice in Wonderland feel about the flow chart.
In the top half of the chart you will see that action (or a decision not to act) is in the hands of the General Purposes Committee. The GPC consists of 7 Labour Cabinet Members and one Conservative opposition member.
In the bottom half you can see that the GPC notifies the Cabinet. In effect this is the 7 Cabinet members plus one Tory notifying 8 Cabinet members (Cllr Mashari is added to the 7).
They then have a kind of internal debate with themselves where they might object as Cabinet and reconsider as GPC, before the Dismissal Advisory Panel comes into play...
The Council will be asked to formally approve the appointment of Carolyn Downs as Chief Executive and Head of Paid Services with effect from September 7th 2015 LINK