IT HAS NOT gone un-noticed by the Thurrock Conservative group, that council leader John Kent has now taken up three roles in the Labour cabinet.
Cllr John Kent’s announced on Wednesday that he was going to take personal charge of finance and education, as well as leading the whole council.
Usually, different Cabinet members take responsibility for different areas of council policy. However, following the resignation of education portfolio holder Oliver Gerrish, Cllr Kent has decided to add overseeing the borough’s schools to his existing responsibilities for the council’s finances.
The move has led to criticism that three big jobs are too much for one person.
Leader of the Conservatives Cllr Phil Anderson said “You have to be alarmed about Cllr Kent’s latest move to pull power to the centre. Ensuring the effective running of the entire council is a demanding job on its own. Trying to control the council’s finances at the same time was a big ask last year, and to take on education as well is a step too far.
“Ensuring our children are educated to the best possible standard is the biggest challenge facing Thurrock today. Making sure the council spends within its means in an age of austerity comes a very close second. It is just not credible that Cllr Kent can expect to do both these jobs well and still lead the council effectively.
“Perhaps the problem is that he has simply run out of talent, and he can’t find a portfolio holder who is capable of handling such an important area of council policy.