William Eichler 13 October 2015

Councils plan joint management team

A plan to create a single senior management team to run Malvern Hills and Wychavon District Councils could save both authorities £280,000.

Currently there are nine senior managers running both authorities. It is estimated that reducing this number to six through what they hope will be voluntary redundancies would save each council an estimated £140,000 a year.

The redundancies would cost around £220,000, but this would come from a government grant both councils received to transform the way they work rather than from funding for frontline services.

Cllr Phil Grove, leader of Malvern Hills District Council, said: ‘Despite facing severe cuts to our funding, we've made a commitment to protect front line services as much as we possibly can. That requires us to look at measures such as this.’

The two councils are no strangers to sharing management. They have already collectively saved £190,000 by sharing a chief executive/managing director, head of paid service, head of housing and planning and head of economic development.

This current plan was proposed by chief executive/managing director Jack Hegarty as an attempt to defend frontline services in the face of cuts to their funding.

Their main government grant has fallen by 53% since 2010/11 and chancellor George Osborne is expected to announce further cuts in his Autumn Statement on 25 November

Cllr Grove emphasised that the two authorities will remain independent.

Cllr Linda Robinson, leader of Wychavon District Council, added: ‘We've already demonstrated how sharing senior management can benefit both organisations as well as save money and this seems the next logical step.’

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