By Andrew Topping, Local Democracy Reporter
The Labour administration at Mansfield District Council has reshuffled its cabinet following the group’s majority local election win on May 4.
Elected mayor Andy Abrahams, who increased his majority from just two votes to 4,995, continues to lead the council alongside an increased number of Labour councillors.
The group secured 25 seats out of 35, alongside Mr Abrahams as mayor, up from the 15 it won in 2019.
It came amid a slump from the former ruling Mansfield Independents group, which saw its seats in the chamber fall from 13 to four.
The Conservatives went on to become the largest opposition group, with five seats.
The remaining two seats were then filled by unaligned independents Cllr June Stendall and Cllr Steve Garner.
Now Mr Abrahams’ Labour administration has held its first full council meeting since the election victory and a new set of cabinet members has been confirmed.
Cllr Craig Whitby (Lab), who represents Manor, continues in the role as deputy mayor and cabinet member for corporate and finance.
Cllr Stuart Richardson (Lab), who represents Penniment, also continues to sit in the cabinet as portfolio holder for regeneration and growth.
And the position as portfolio holder for environment and leisure continues to be held by Cllr Andy Burgin (Lab), who represents Warsop Carrs.
However, a new post of portfolio holder for housing has been created in the administration, which will be held by Cllr Anne Callaghan (Lab), who represents Hornby.
Housing was previously included in the safer communities, housing and wellbeing up until the election earlier this month.
But this portfolio has now been reformed into the portfolio for wellbeing, health and safer communities.
Two councillors will job share this position – Cllr Angie Jackson (Lab), of the Kingsway ward, and Cllr Caroline Ellis (Lab), who represents Mill Lane.
Speaking as the cabinet members were confirmed during the most recent full council meeting on Tuesday (May 23), Adam Hill, the council’s chief executive, confirmed the new post will cost £14,000.
However, he said creating the post is part of Mr Abrahams’ “gift” as mayor.
He told the meeting: “In relation to the additional portfolio, this is a new portfolio and is within the gift of the mayor.
“This will see an increase in the budget of circa £14,000, which will be reflected in this year’s budget.
“It is within the gift of the mayor and is part of the constitution.”
Mr Abrahams added: “Welcome to the old [cabinet] members who are taking up their duties, and to the new executive appointees.”
It came as new councillors were also appointed into the roles of chair and vice-chair of the council for the coming financial year.
Cllr Sue Swinscoe (Lab), who represents the Bancroft ward, was elected unopposed as chair of the council.
She will now oversee all full council meetings between now and the next annual general meeting in May 2024.
Cllr Terry Clay (Lab), who represents Brick Kiln, was elected as her deputy, also unopposed.
It came after Dave Saunders (Mans Ind), who previously represented Sandhurst and chaired the council for the past two years, was thanked for his service in the meeting.
Speaking before Mr Saunders handed the position to Cllr Swinscoe, Mr Abrahams presented him with a medal and said: “I’d like to show our appreciation for your efficient, fair and professional attitude.”