Tories slam cabinet roles

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The former leader of Derbyshire County Council has accused Labour’s new cabinet organisation as an attempt to ‘hoodwink’ the public.

Cllr Andrew Lewer, who lost his leadership of the authority at the start of May after a convincing victory for the reds - says Labour’s decision to delegate functions to deputy cabinet members and to increase portfolio holders’ pay is ‘outrageous’.

He also criticised the move to prevent councillors from asking cabinet members questions at council meetings in a series of changes he branded as the biggest to the constitution ‘in decades’.

He says Labour have misled the public on promises to make its leadership more transparent.

“Had we proposed such outrageous changes four years ago the Labour group would certainly have howled down the corridors of County Hall.” He said.

Labour says the changes, which include reducing the cabinet from nine to six members and replacing cabinet support members with new deputy cabinet positions, will make for better decision making.

Labour has also reinstated a scrutiny committee to focus on NHS services.