6th June 2017
By Graham Smith
The Cornwall Council cabinet line-up is due to be announced tomorrow (Weds) and is expected to include some new faces.
Among the Liberal Democrats returning to the front bench are Edwina Hannaford and Geoff Brown. The newcomers are Sue James and Rob Rotchell. The five Independent members of the cabinet, revealed by Cornwall Reports on Sunday, are Julian German, Andrew Mitchell, Sally Hawken, Bob Egerton and Mike Eathorne-Gibbons.
The respective portfolio jobs are also due to be announced tomorrow. Committee chairmanships are unlikely to be announced until after the general election, not least because the former chair of the important Strategic Planning Committee, Rob Nolan, is currently a Parliamentary candidate.
Not much to show for getting more votes than anyone else - Cornwall's Tories say they have been sidelined in the new council
In a final snub to the Conservatives, the Lib Dem-Indie coalition offered the council’s Tories just two committee vice-chairmanships – Audit and Pensions. The Conservatives have said “no” and will now seek to oppose the council’s political leadership.
The new cabinet: top row Geoff Brown, Sue James, Sally Hawken; middle row Bob Egerton, Rob Rotchell, Edwina Hannaford; bottom row: Mike Eathorne Gibbons, Andrew Mitchell and Julian German
The new council leader, elected two weeks ago, is Launceston Liberal Democrat Adam Paynter.
Meanwhile the Local Government Boundary Commission is due to announce next week how many councillors it thinks are needed to run Cornwall Council’s £1.2 billion budget. The previous council had suggested 99 members, from the original 123, but most observers expect the Commission to rule that significantly fewer are required – possibly no more than 85. The Commission will then set to work on re-drawing local ward boundaries, sweeping away about 40 Cornwall councillors in an exercise which will, at a stroke, save taxpayers more than £500,000.