Council’s chief shake-up

THE number of top district council bosses has been cut from five to three in a major shake-up to cut costs and and ‘streamline’ the service.

THE number of top district council bosses has been cut from five to three in a major shake-up to cut costs and and ‘streamline’ the service.

Last year, the Journal reported how the district council was considering slashing its top management tier, consisting of chief executive Mark Williams and corporate directors Karime Hassan, Diccon Pearse, Peter Jeffs and Denise Lyon to cut costs.

Now East Devon District Council has appointed Richard Cohen and corporate director Denise Lyon as deputy chief executives to support Mr Williams, also the chief executive of South Somerset District Council.

It follows the move to Exeter by economic development chief Karime Hassan in February, while the other corporate directors Diccon Pearse and Peter Jeffs leave at the end of this month and the end of May, respectively.


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Mrs Lyon will be responsible for developing and measuring the corporate business and designing it around taxpayers’ while Mr Cohen, 49, is responsible for development, regeneration and partnership and starts on May 9.

Mr Cohen’s CV includes civil service and local government including setting up of Inner City Task Forces in London and Plymouth and an economic development and regeneration roles in Bristol and with the London Development Agency (LDA).

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Since leaving the LDA last year, he has been retained as an independent consultant to work with some of the same London Boroughs to co-ordinate them in establishing a development corridor to the north of London.

A council spokesman said: “The new management team is structured to better meet the challenges facing EDDC in the coming months and years.”

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