New Chairman of Council – Jeane Lea

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Councillor Jeane Lea is the new Chairman of Epping Forest District Council. Outgoing Chairman Councillor Liz Webster handed the reigns over to Mrs Lea at the first meeting of the Council since May’s local elections.

Cllr Webster and Chairman Jeane Lea

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Welcoming new Councillors

Proceedings began with a welcome by Councillor Mrs Webster to new councillors taking their seats in the council chamber for the first time with photographs of the signing of the register.

Thanks for a year of service

Business continued with Councillor Webster’s final address to fellow members as chairman. She thanked all her colleagues for their kindness, guidance and support. Mrs Webster said that she had met some amazing people during her year and thanked everyone for helping raise £4,600 for her Chairman’s Charity, the Royal British Legion.

Tributes to Liz Webster were led by Council Leader Councillor Chris Whitbread. His sentiments were echoed in turn by Councillor Stephen Murray, Councillor Caroline Pond and Council Chief Executive Glen Chipp.

Welcoming the new Chairman

In a warm, affectionate and funny speech, Councillor Syd Stravrou nominated her friend and fellow Waltham Abbey councillor, Jeane Lea as the new Chairman of Council. The nomination was seconded by Councillor Chris Whitbread with unanimous support from the Council Chamber.

Accepting the honour, Councillor Lea thanked fellow councillors for their kind words and promised to do her utmost to uphold the best traditions of the chairmanship. She announced that her Chairman’s Charity will be the Herts Essex Air Ambulance.

Councillor David Stallan is the new Vice-Chairman of Council.

Mrs Jill Angold-Stephens received warm applause on presentation of a long-service medal for her late husband Ken who passed away earlier this year.

Cabinet and Committees

Business continued with the appointment other councillors to official positions, committees and outside organisations.

Council Leader Chris Whitbread has a new Cabinet. Following the election of Councillor Stallan as Vice-Chairman of Council, Councillor Syd Stavrou moves from the Finance to the Housing Portfolio. Gagan Mohindra returns to the Cabinet as the Council’s new Finance Portfolio Holder.

Councillors Richard Bassett and John Philip swap portfolios. Councillor Bassett takes on the Governance and Development Management Portfolio while John Philip takes on the stewardship of the Local Plan as Planning Policy Portfolio Holder.

Other members of the Cabinet retain existing roles:

  • Councillor Anne Grigg                    Asset Management and Economic Development Portfolio
  • Councillor Will Breare-Hall           Environment Portfolio
  • Councillor Helen Kane                    Leisure and Community Services Portfolio
  • Councillor Gary Waller                   Safer, Greener and Transport Portfolio
  • Councillor Alan Lion                       Technology and Support Services Portfolio

Other appointments include Councillor Mary Sartin as the new Chairman of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee, Councillor Brian Surtees as Chairman of the Licensing Committee, and Councillor Brian Sandler as Chairman of the District Development Management Committee.