City council to set up committee to consider action over chief executive after Cabinet Office leaving drinks admission

Sheffield City Council is to set up a cross-party committee to consider what action should be taken in relation to its chief executive, Kate Josephs, after she last week said she was "truly sorry" for going to a leaving party in December 2020 to mark the end of her role as Director General of the Cabinet Office's COVID-19 Task Force.

A cross-party committee is necessary under the prescribed statutory procedure for dealing with a role at this level in local government.

The committee will meet in private and will be made up of a small number of members, politically proportionate, including at least one who is a member of the council’s Co-Operative Executive.

The council said it expected the committee to begin work in the coming days and that it expected it to move "at pace". It is also expected that the committee will also take in the findings of the Sue Gray report.

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Sheffield’s Leader, Cllr Terry Fox, said: “Because of Kate Josephs’ senior role as Chief Executive, we need to set up a cross-party committee to consider what steps, if any, should be taken next.

“I have heard strong and emotional views from across the city. I absolutely understand the reaction after all that Sheffield has been through these last couple of years.

“We now need to let the committee carry out this work, and we also continue to await the outcome of the Cabinet Office’s wider report. There is nothing further to add at this time.”

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