Sutton Council leader Sean Brennan to step down

Sean Brennan will step down as leader of Sutton Council after almost a decade

Sean Brennan will step down as leader of Sutton Council after almost a decade

First published in News Your Local Guardian: Photograph of the Author by , Assistant Editor

Sutton Council leader Sean Brennan has announced he is stepping down after almost a decade in the role.

Councillor Sean Brennan, will step down from his post on May 21 when changes to how the council is run are brought in.

The Liberal Democrat group will elect his successor at their group meeting this weekend, with deputy leader Ruth Dombey expected to assume the role.

Coun Brennan, a former teacher first elected as a Sutton ward councillor in 1986 and who became leader in 2002, will still represent Sutton Central ward as a councillor.

Explaining his decision to step down, Coun Brennan said: "It’s been a real privilege to serve the community I have lived in for so many years and to meet such a wide range of dedicated and inspiring people.

"Throughout my tenure I’ve been struck by the incredible community spirit that we have in our borough.

"Whether it’s volunteering, helping neighbours, or having street parties, people want to know and help each other.

"I couldn’t have done my job without the help and support of local people, and I’d like to pay tribute to the many voluntary groups and partner organisations throughout the borough.

"Since I became leader almost a decade ago, the role of local authorities has grown whilst our government funding has been cut back significantly.

"Sutton receives one of the poorest funding settlements in London, but by being efficient and making savings we have been able to invest in jobs, community safety, schools and parks – whilst freezing council tax.

"It has been a period of significant change. All councils will be taking on new responsibilities in areas such as public health.

"With a new committee system coming into force in May, I strongly believe that this is the right time for a new leadership team to bring new ideas and new impetus to a changing and challenging environment."

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The new committee system of governance - involving proportionate numbers of cross-party councillors in committees headed up by lead councillors- will replace the current cabinet system, where the council leader, deputy leader and eight decision-making executive councillors decide on council policy.

The Lib Dem choice for leader will be subject to a formal vote of all councillors at a full council meeting on April 30.

The council’s new leader designate will not adopt any formal powers until after the full council meeting on 21 May, when the governance system will be voted in.

Comments (7)

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1:18pm Wed 11 Apr 12

theavengers says...

take McCoy with him and get rid, completely, of these people who are hell bent on destroying Sutton and using our tax cash like play money.
take McCoy with him and get rid, completely, of these people who are hell bent on destroying Sutton and using our tax cash like play money. theavengers
  • Score: -1

1:19pm Wed 11 Apr 12

Giles C says...

Much as though i detest the Lib Dem council i do not detest Shaun Brennan who has always struck me as a decnt chap.
What worries me is if Rottweiler Dombey takes charge. Lurch to the left is what will occur.
Much as though i detest the Lib Dem council i do not detest Shaun Brennan who has always struck me as a decnt chap. What worries me is if Rottweiler Dombey takes charge. Lurch to the left is what will occur. Giles C
  • Score: -1

2:44pm Wed 11 Apr 12

Charles Edwards says...

He's a good egg. Never voted for him but you can tell his heart's in the right place.
He's a good egg. Never voted for him but you can tell his heart's in the right place. Charles Edwards
  • Score: 1

4:39pm Wed 11 Apr 12

LiberalsOut says...

Excellent news - the problem is another waste of space will take over.
Excellent news - the problem is another waste of space will take over. LiberalsOut
  • Score: -1

5:42pm Wed 11 Apr 12

Michael Pantlin says...

Excellent move. LBS went headlong into to the fashionable council cabinet system when so many were not in favour. The change back to a committee system they now herald as a money saving move and better representation of the people. So QED the cabinet system was not very democratic and cost thousands of pound more in pay for the cabinet members. You will never get a LibDamned to say sorry we screwed up on that one and got it wrong. Perhaps with more committees having a say the gross excesses of Sutton High Street spending will not be repeated but I am not holding my breath. Don't forget in the approaching GLA elections there are other parties than the LibDem Tory, Green, NewOldorWhaterver Labour and I've downloaded and printed a nice UKIP window poster off their webpage.
Excellent move. LBS went headlong into to the fashionable council cabinet system when so many were not in favour. The change back to a committee system they now herald as a money saving move and better representation of the people. So QED the cabinet system was not very democratic and cost thousands of pound more in pay for the cabinet members. You will never get a LibDamned to say sorry we screwed up on that one and got it wrong. Perhaps with more committees having a say the gross excesses of Sutton High Street spending will not be repeated but I am not holding my breath. Don't forget in the approaching GLA elections there are other parties than the LibDem Tory, Green, NewOldorWhaterver Labour and I've downloaded and printed a nice UKIP window poster off their webpage. Michael Pantlin
  • Score: -1

7:02pm Wed 11 Apr 12

Michael Pantlin says...

theavengers wrote:
take McCoy with him and get rid, completely, of these people who are hell bent on destroying Sutton and using our tax cash like play money.
Did he jump or was he pushed?
[quote][p][bold]theavengers[/bold] wrote: take McCoy with him and get rid, completely, of these people who are hell bent on destroying Sutton and using our tax cash like play money.[/p][/quote]Did he jump or was he pushed? Michael Pantlin
  • Score: -1

7:10pm Wed 11 Apr 12

Michael Pantlin says...

"Sutton receives one of the poorest funding settlements in London". Hold on a minute we do have a LibDem Coalition Government don't we? Just what more to Sutton residents have to do to get a fair "settlement" having voted in two LibDem MPs one of them a full Minister, and a council with an overwhelming LibDem majority. Perhaps we should have a community whip round for £250,000 to pay for a rep's seat at Dave's Kitchen Donor Kebab Cabinet to get any prospect of change?
"Sutton receives one of the poorest funding settlements in London". Hold on a minute we do have a LibDem Coalition Government don't we? Just what more to Sutton residents have to do to get a fair "settlement" having voted in two LibDem MPs one of them a full Minister, and a council with an overwhelming LibDem majority. Perhaps we should have a community whip round for £250,000 to pay for a rep's seat at Dave's Kitchen Donor Kebab Cabinet to get any prospect of change? Michael Pantlin
  • Score: -1

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