Kent County Council has announced its new cabinet following last week’s elections.
It comes as the Conservatives retained control of the authority and increased their majority.
The group won 67 of the 81 seats with the Liberal Democrats emerging as the official opposition with seven seats.
UKIP lost all of the seats it won in 2013 while Labour dropped from 12 to five.
Announcing the new line-up, Leader of Kent County Council Paul Carter said:
“This new Cabinet is a very strong team that harnesses the very best talents at County Hall.
“The Cabinet has a challenging agenda ahead, continuing its focus on delivering excellent value for money and improving frontline services.
“The new cabinet will ensure we remain a strong, vibrant and forward-thinking local authority.”
The new cabinet, to be officially confirmed at the full council meeting on May 25, is:
- Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Strategic Commissioning & Public Health: Peter Oakford
Deputy Cabinet Members: Catherine Rankin and Paulina Stockell.
- Cabinet Member for Finance: John Simmonds
Deputy Cabinet Member: Margaret Crabtree
- Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care: Graham Gibbens
Deputy Cabinet Member: Diane Marsh
- Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and Education: Roger Gough
Deputy Cabinet Members: Ann Allen and Shellina Prendergast and Michael Northey
- Cabinet Member for Customers, Communications and Performance: Susan Carey
Deputy Cabinet Member: Jeremy Kite
- Cabinet Member for Planning, Highways, Transport & Waste: Matthew Balfour
Deputy Cabinet Member: Michael Payne
- Cabinet Member for Corporate & Democratic Services: Eric Hotson
- Cabinet Member for Economic Development: Mark Dance
Deputy Cabinet Member: Sean Holden
- Cabinet Member for Community & Regulatory Services: Mike Hill
Deputy Cabinet Member: Sarah Hohler
The number of county councillors reduced from 84 to 81 following a boundary review in 2016.
40 of the previously sitting Members were returned to the council and there are 36 new KCC Members alongside five who had been Members in the past.
- Act as the council’s spokesperson and advocate
- Lead the development of council policy and make recommendations to the cabinet
- Make individual executive decisions on behalf of the cabinet when needed
- Provide guidance to the cabinet on the running of related activities
- Give guidance to the cabinet on budget priorities
- Monitor performance and make sure that policy is delivered
- Lead the improvement of related council services
- Make sure that related activities meet the council’s overall vision, core values and guiding principles
- Decide the area of activity for their deputy cabinet member.
Other duties include:
- Contributing to debate and decision-making as part of the Cabinet as a whole
- Working constructively and openly with backbench, opposition members and officers to make sure that the overview and scrutiny process is working correctly
- Appearing before, and responding to reports of, overview and scrutiny bodies
- Representing the council at national and local level.
State of the Parties (and previous result)
- Conservative – 67 (47)
- Liberal Democrat – 7 (7)
- Labour – 5 (12)
- Green – 1 (1)
- Swanscombe & Greenhithe Residents’ Association – 1 (1)
- UKIP – 0 (16)
- Average 32.2%
- Highest District turnout – Dover (35.2%)
- Lowest District turnout – Dartford (28%)
- Highest Division turnout – Faversham (43%)
- Lowest Division turnout – Dartford East (22.81%)
Percentage of the Vote
- Conservative – 49.6%
- Labour – 20%
- Liberal Democrat – 14.1%
- UKIP – 9.5%
- Green – 5%
- Other – 1.8%
- Conservative – 209,159
- Labour – 84,383
- Liberal Democrat – 59,619
- UKIP – 40,259
- Green – 21,216
- Other – 7,462