Executive post

Lead Cabinet member for Planning


Responsibilities of Planning Portfolio Holder

Services Covered:

·                      Development Control

·                      Design and Conservation

·                      Building Control

·                      Economic Development

·                      Transport Initiatives (including Concessionary Fares)

·                      Procurement

·                      Efficiency


Lead Member for Cross-Cutting Themes and / or Corporate Priorities:

·                      Business and Employment

·                      Travel for Work


Main Purpose of Portfolio Holder’s Role

In addition to the duties and responsibilities expected to be undertaken by all members, to:

·                      hold political responsibility within the scope of the area assigned;

·                      provide political leadership in the formulation of strategies and plans within his / her portfolio, the achievement of best value and in the setting of objectives and targets prior to the approval by Cabinet and / or Council.


Duties and Responsibilities

*         Participate effectively as a member of the Cabinet – take joint responsibility with other Cabinet members for all actions and be accountable collectively.

*         Challenge issues prior to making decisions if felt appropriate to do so. Ensure appropriate regard to the community’s interests and to any equalities and diversity issues. Encourage openness and honesty.

*         To exercise delegated powers in accordance with the Council Constitution.

*         Shape and develop the strategic priorities and vision of the Council, participating in debates and discussion about policy issues across the range of services provided by the Council.

*         In connection with the portfolio:

(a)               build good relationships with appropriate senior officers and work with them in developing policy or strategic issues prior to formal reporting. Be supportive in dealing with any problems at a strategic level

(b)               keep abreast of related developments and policies at national, regional and local level

(c)               enhance the Council’s reputation through taking the national stage where possible and participating in regional and national networks

(d)               represent the Cabinet at the Scrutiny and Overview Committee in connection with any related matter that may be requisitioned (called in).  Similarly, attend Scrutiny and Overview Committee at that body’s request in connection with any issues associated with the portfolio that are being scrutinised.

(e)               be aware of issues of importance to the community and other stakeholders concerning portfolio services and work towards implementing the Sustainable Community Strategy

(f)                 be aware of key budgetary issues affecting the portfolio of the Cabinet member

*         Facilitate a corporate leadership role where appropriate to do so, and foster links through partnerships such as the Local Strategic Partnership.

*         Be responsible for continuous personal development. Take advantage of learning opportunities to build on understanding and knowledge, and to develop relevant skills.

*         Along with colleague Cabinet members be available as appropriate for other members to discuss any queries or matters of concern.

*         To provide political leadership in ensuring that service strategies, plans, objectives and targets within his / her portfolio are implemented, monitored, and achieved.

*         To remain accountable and answerable to the Council in relation to his / her portfolio.

*         On a programmed basis, to report regularly to the Council setting out progress achieved in the implementation of the service plan within his / her portfolio and outline any proposed developments or current issues and activity within his / her area.

*         At meetings of the Cabinet to present / speak to and to move any necessary motions in relation to his / her portfolio.

*         To attend, if required, the Scrutiny and Overview Committee or panel thereof to be held to account for matters within his / her portfolio and to be questioned.

*         To advise the Cabinet on how to respond to a scrutiny report relating to his / her portfolio.

*         To be the principal political spokesperson for his / her portfolio

*         To engender a culture of ‘no surprises’ for local members by:

·                      considering whether any particular area of policy or issue specifically affects a particular member’s division;

·                      briefing relevant local members at the earliest opportunity and in any event making every endeavour to do so before any matter is considered by the Cabinet or action to be taken becomes public;

·                      keeping a local member informed about and where practicable inviting the local member to intended visits or events within the member’s ward;

·                      being aware that if a media enquiry relates to a specific electoral ward and requires a political response that journalists are advised to also contact the relevant local member.

*         To represent, by virtue of his / her position, the Council on local, regional or national bodies or at related events and conferences.

*         To attend or be represented at such civic and ceremonial functions as deemed appropriate.


Conventions and Protocols

*         The Cabinet portfolio holder remains accountable to the Council in relation to the scope of the area assigned to him / her.

*         Questions at Council will be answered by the relevant Cabinet portfolio holder.



The tasks and duties outlined in this role description relate to the political or member level activities of the District Council.  Accountability for members’ performance is ultimately through the political and electoral process but will also be subject to any member personal development arrangements agreed by the Council.

Post is held by