Sheffield Council formally approves committee system change

Sheffield Council formally approved its change to a committee system following the governance referendum.

Wednesday, 19th May 2021, 5:53 pm

The change from a strong leader and cabinet model to a modern committee system was formally passed at the council’s annual meeting which was held at Ponds Forge rather than the Town Hall due to social distancing.

Voters chose the change in a referendum earlier this month but the council is not required to make the shift until May 2022.

In preparation, the council will need to come up with a design for the committee system which will be overseen by the cross-party overview and scrutiny management committee.

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Issues that will need to be decided upon in more detail include: the terms of reference in the committees and sub-committees, how the public will participate in a new or enhanced model and how the council will engage with communities as part of decision making, committee sizes and frequency of meetings, how the budgetary framework will work and how the whole system will work with partner organisations.

Also announced today was the new leadership of the council.

Following a no overall control result at the local elections, Labour and the Greens decided to form a co-operative administration.

The Liberal Democrats were invited to join for a ‘rainbow cabinet’ but declined.

Councillor Terry Fox, leader of Sheffield Labour, was nominated leader of the new co-operative administration.

He said he was keen to introduce the committee system as soon as possible, saying no overall control presented an “ideal opportunity” to trial a new way of working.