Our strategic management board (SMB) meets every week to consider a range of issues affecting council services. SMB plays a key role in deciding the strategic direction of the council and is made up of the following senior officers.
John East, Acting Chief Executive
John leads the officer team and is head of paid service. Working for and with councillors, John is ultimately responsible for all our activities. John is also formally responsible for specific major projects.
Catherine Whitehead, Head of Democratic, Legal and Policy
Catherine is responsible for providing legal advice, support for all 60 councillors and their meetings, land charges; electoral registration; communications; feedback; community planning, including our local strategic partnership, community engagement; cross-boundary partnership working; organisational development; service improvements including performance management and business continuity.
David Skinner, Head of Finance and Commercial
David is responsible for providing a range of back-office support services including accountancy, treasury management, payroll, creditors and debtors, procurement, audit and risk management. David is also responsible for revenues services that include council tax and housing benefits and fraud.
Nigel Dicker, Head of Housing, Environment and Community
Nigel is responsible for a range of essential services across private and public sector housing, environmental health, waste and recycling, culture and leisure services, development and projects, community regeneration, community safety and emergency planning.
John McMillan, Head of Human Resources, ICT and Shared Support Services
John is responsible for providing a range of back-office support services that include human resource management; training and development; corporate administration; ICT services; design and print and our customer service centre.
Penelope Tollitt, Head of Planning and Sustainability
Penelope is responsible for the three key areas of development management, spatial planning and building control. The service overall covers all aspects of planning applications (including pre-application advice, appeals and compliance); building regulations; planning policy including the Local Development Framework; infrastructure and environmental planning; urban design; conservation and tree projects.
Peter Wright, Head of Regeneration and Investment
Peter is responsible for a number of service areas, including economic development partnerships, property project development and delivery, estates management, and car parking.
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