Keith Walters named new County Council leader

SAWTRY and Ellington s county councillor, Keith Walters, was today (Friday) officially confirmed as the leader of Cambridgeshire County Council in succession to Councillor Shona Johnstone, who resigned two weeks ago. Cllr Walters will take on the role unt

SAWTRY and Ellington's county councillor, Keith Walters, was today (Friday) officially confirmed as the leader of Cambridgeshire County Council in succession to Councillor Shona Johnstone, who resigned two weeks ago.

Cllr Walters will take on the role until May 2008, when the ruling Conservative group will nominate a successor to be endorsed by the full county council on May 13.

One of his first jobs as leader was to announce a change of cabinet responsibilities. Councillor John Reynolds (Bar Hill) will become cabinet member for corporate services with immediate effect. He will oversee the council's £500million-plus budget, human resources, property and information technology functions. He will also guide the budget setting process for next year.

Council Reynolds, who was deputy leader until last May, replaces Councillor Alan Melton who stepped down earlier this week. John Reynolds will retain cabinet responsibility for planning and regional matters until a new member is appointed to cabinet at the council meeting on December 11.

Cllr Johnstone's resignation followed what she admitted was an ill-judged telephone call that resulted in the council's chosen candidate for chief executive turning down the post.

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