Flintshire County Council director will be replaced despite staff sharing policy

COUNCIL bosses expect to replace a top director, despite insisting they are looking to share roles with other councils.

Susan Lewis, Flintshire County Council’s former director of Community Services, retired from her post earlier this month by mutual consent.

She had been at the centre of a bullying row after allegations she made against Cllr Patrick Heesom sparked an Ombudsman’s inquiry.

But while the six North Wales councils aim to save more than £25m a year through collaboration in education, social care and health, environment and corporate services over the next few years, Flintshire says the role is one it cannot do without.

Chief executive Colin Everett said: “The council expects to appoint a replacement director of community services due to the size and demands of the directorate – which covers both social services and housing. The council will discuss the options with neighbouring authorities before making a final decision.

“Some of the achieved and planned collaborations involve sharing employees and making joint appointments. Joint appointments are possible in some cases and are not in others. Where a high level of local presence is required – due to the demands of the job – a joint appointment is not practicable.

“Flintshire has joint appointments in service areas including waste, highways, social services, human resources and emergency planning. The number of such appointments will grow as we combine more services within or across the whole region.

“Flintshire has reduced its number of director posts by half in the last two years and has reduced its annual management costs by well in excess of £1m. Further reductions are being made.”