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Political storm brewing at Powys County Council

Created on 18/09/2019 @ 17:21
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A political storm is brewing at Powys County Council as leader Cllr Rosemarie Harris looks to keep the Independent/Conservative coalition afloat.

Next Wednesday an extraordinary full council meeting will be held to discuss a vote of no confidence in education portfolio holder, Cllr Myfanwy Alexander.

The motion was put forward by The Liberal Democrat-Green group and follows a scathing Estyn report which was published on September 10.

Behind the scenes councillors have been meeting to discuss the situation, which could see the Independent/Conservative administration damaged if no solution is found.

Sources at county hall have told the Local Democracy Service that one way around the problem would be to expand the number of portfolio holders from eight to 10.

This would give Cllr Harris the leeway to offer Cllr Alexander another portfolio and also keep the balance of the cabinet favouring the larger independent group.

The Local Democracy Service spoke to Cllr Harris about the issues. She said: “I’m considering expanding the cabinet to 10. I have actually been considering it for the last year.

“We have the growth deal (Mid Wales Growth Deal) coming on stream and will need to take more staff to deal with that.”

On Cllr Alexander, Cllr Harris said: “I won’t be removing her from the cabinet.”

A source told the Local Democracy Service: “Myfanwy has been asked to move by the whole cabinet but she’s being stubborn.”

The sources said that the cabinet would go up to 10 with Gwilym Williams, Graham Breeze or Edwin Roderick brought in.

The Local Democracy Service believes Cllrs Gwynfor Thomas and Amanda Jenner  are being considered for the education portfolio.

Cllr Alexander has been asked for a comment – but has not responded.

Picture: Powys County Council Leader, Cllr Rosemarie Harris.
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