The role of Head of Economic Development at MK Council is being removed from MK Council’s management structure in a bid to make savings.
The position was previously focused on coordinating the Council’s economic development function, developing new enterprise and economic initiatives and providing support for employment, skills, small businesses, high streets and town centres.
This cut comes at a critical time for the Labour-led MK Council considering that economic development will need to be a high-priority for any local authority in order to fulfill a “V-shape” economic recovery following Covid-19 economic contraction.
Questions will also be raised over MK Council’s economic priorities when compared to other local authorities across the country. In Newcastle, the City Council are hiring a new Head of Economic Development to “shape the city and regional economic recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic” while Sunderland and Basildon Councils are both also hiring for the role of Head of Economic Development.
The Milton Keynes Conservatives are raising their concerns over the role’s removal and are calling for significant investment into the Council’s economic development team in order to better protect and create jobs in difficult economic times.
The Leader of the Milton Keynes Conservative Group, Cllr Alex Walker, said:
“We are calling for significant investment into the Council’s economic development team.
The Council needs to be at the forefront of economic development and play a leading role in shaping our city’s economic recovery.
Abolishing the Head of Economic Development role, at this time, is a move that will worry local business as they question what our Labour Council’s priorities really are.”