Rotherham Council to reclaim powers

Rotherham councillors are set to receive decision-making powers from commissioners who maintain services are of good quality, well run and have strong leadership in place. 

Services include housing, education, public health, highways, leisure, cultural services and planning policy, which are due to be returned to the control of Rotherham Council’s cabinet in January 2016. 

The government-appointed commissioners originally intervened to take over the running of the Council following a sex abuse scandal in 2014, which led to mass resignations. 

It was initially expected that the Council would remain in the hands of commissioners until 2019. 

Sir Derek Myers, lead commissioner of Rotherham Borough Council, said: “I and my fellow commissioners are confident that Rotherham councillors are in a strong position to once again take responsibility and accountability for a number of core services, and that the organisation is fit to support them in doing so for local people.

“The council leader has shown strong and enthusiastic leadership, as have members of his advisory cabinet. Together with commissioners and officers, they have driven significant improvements across services over the last nine months.”

Myers continued to add that other areas, will continue to be overseen by government-appointed commissioners.

He said: “While the pace of improvement has been good, there is much more to do in some areas. At this time we don’t propose to hand back those services which we know are still in need of change and improvement, including children’s social care, but we will continue to work closely with the advisory cabinet and review this position regularly.”