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City council to ditch ‘Leader and Cabinet’ model for committee system

Sheffield City Council has agreed to replace its “leader and cabinet” system from May this year with a number of cross-party committees.

The move, which follows a referendum held in 2020, was approved unanimously.

Sheffield has become the first of England’s Core Cities to make the switch.

Deputy Leader Cllr Julie Grocutt, who proposed the motion, said: “Our aim from the start has been to introduce a system that’s open, transparent and allows for effective engagement with our communities, residents and businesses across all of the city.”

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Cllr Grocutt said a review would be undertaken after six months.

“We want to ensure that Sheffielders understand and can engage in local democracy,” she said. “It’s important that we listen to the people of Sheffield, that we focus on getting this committee system right, a system that listens to and works with our citizens. As part of the review we will listen to our communities, partners, stakeholders, staff and councillors.”

Under the new system there will be eight new policy committees, which will align with the council’s services areas and its strategic aims. They are:

  • Strategy and Resources Policy Committee
  • Adult Health and Social Care Policy Committee
  • Communities, Parks and Leisure Policy Committee
  • Economic Development and Skills Policy Committee
  • Education, Children and Families Policy Committee
  • Housing Policy Committee
  • Transport, Regeneration and Climate Policy Committee
  • Waste and Street Scene Policy Committee

The detailed proposals were developed by a cross-party group of councillors based on input from a wide range of the public, partners, stakeholders, experts and academics.

The city’s Local Area Committees, introduced last year, are unchanged by the decision and will continue their work in local communities.

Earlier this month Liverpool City Council announced that it would consult residents on how the city should be governed from 2023. It is seeking views on the three forms of governance that are allowed by law.

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