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27.11.18

Lincolnshire CEO steps down after just four months in role

Lincolnshire County Council’s CEO has left the council after just four months in the role due to differences in opinion with the council’s leader.

Keith Ireland has stepped down from his post at the county council after only joining from the City of Wolverhampton Council in July.

He and Martin Hill, the leader of the council, released a joint statement to staff saying Ireland was leaving the council due to differences over a number of key issues.

It read: “Over the last few months, it has become clear that we do not share the same approach to a number of important issues that are facing the council, and, in these circumstances, we are agreed that a parting of the ways is the best way forward for both of us.

“Whilst unfortunately things have not worked out, we are united in wishing each other the very best for the future.”

Hill added: “I would like to take this opportunity to thank Keith for his work and the energy he has brought to it. I wish him every success for the future.”

Ireland left his role as the City of Wolverhampton Council’ managing director to replace Tony McArdle, who had stepped down after 12 years in the role.

McArdle was the chair of Association of County Chief Executives (ACCE) and was praised by the County Councils Network (CNN) which hailed him as a “powerful advocate” for county issues.

Similar to councils up and down the country, the council has struggled to deal with reductions to is budget and a rising demand for public services, and faces a potential funding gap of £180m in three years’ time.

The council is also dealing with a troublesome contract with Serco, and Ireland had previously declared that his “neck was on the line” over the extension of the contract.

 Image credit - Jon Clark

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