Northants county councillor in charge of finance steps down

Michael Clarke
Michael Clarke

There are more changes in the Northamptonshire Council cabinet as the councillor in charge of finance is retiring.

Michael Clarke is handing over the baton to Cllr Malcolm Longley after just four months in post.

The council released a statement this morning saying that Cllr Clarke, who has been a Conservative county councillor since 2009, is retiring due to ill health.

County council leader Matt Golby said: “Malcolm brings a wealth of experience to the table and I’d like to welcome him on board as we face up to some very big financial challenges.

“Malcolm was briefly in the cabinet in a commercial role and this, combined with his experience in the workplace and running his own business, will be an enormous asset to the county council.

“I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank Cllr Clarke for all of his hard work during what has been a very tough few months for us all. Michael brought a great deal of wisdom and pragmatism to the team and he will be very much missed.”

Cllr Longley, who is a retired chartered engineer, has a massive task on his hands.

The council has to make savings of up to £70m this year and is is in the process of identifying further cuts to services.

Last month (August) the council agreed to a list of priorities that will effectively see all discretionary services removed and just core statutory services such as for looked after children and vulnerable adults remaining.

It is also still unknown whether the authority even managed to balance its books this year.

The authority is now being run by new chief executive Theresa Grant and overseen by two government appointed commissioners.

Sarah Ward, Local Democracy Reporter