It has been proposed that Pat Pratley, the council’s current head of paid service is to be appointed permanently to the post of chief executive.
This post the council have said is felt to better reflect the organisation’s priorities and her role and responsibilities. The recommendation – put forward by the appointments and remuneration committee will be decided by full council when they meet on 24 July 2017. Pat Pratley was initially appointed to the post of head of paid service, on an interim basis of 18 months, pending the anticipated changes to the council senior leadership team following the creation of a shared 2020 company. However, the extent of service provision through the 2020 company model has been less than envisaged and the structure of the authority’s services, and the number of directly employed staff, has not considerably changed as it would have through the shared company. Councillor Rowena Hay, chair of the appointments and remuneration committee said: ’It is important that we review the current organisational and leadership structures to ensure we have the capacity and skills to deliver the services to the people of Cheltenham into the foreseeable future. “A chief executive will have the capacity to support leading politicians by acting as an ambassador for the council on a local, regional and national level. “Organisational stability is key for any organisation especially during periods of significant change and financial challenge. The appointment of Pat Pratley to the role will ensure the stability continues. “Members are already familiar with the Pat’s knowledge, skills and expertise having worked closely with her for a number of years in her role as executive director, deputy chief executive and now head of paid service. As a senior officer, Pat has played a key part in many of the major changes this authority has already gone through, as well as providing the most senior officer leadership to the authority over the last year.” Following her appointment, if approved, Pat will undertake a review of the senior leadership structure to ensure that the council has the necessary capacity and skills to secure the future prosperity of Cheltenham and the financial sustainability of the authority. At the Standard we wait with bated breath to find out how much (as a public servant) she will be being paid?