A HEAD of service job at Torfaen council is facing the axe amid financial pressure within the authority's social care and housing department.

The authority is proposing to delete a post from the department's leadership team as part of changes to protect stretched front line services.

If the changes are approved by councillors a lump sum redundancy payment of £71,682.30 and pension costs of £206,314.72 would be made.

A council report says the redundancy would bring savings of £95,000 per year, effectively repaying the cost in just under three years.

In the report Keith Rutherford, chief officer of social care and housing writes: "Due to the continuing growth in demand and increasing pressure on social care and housing services, members were advised during the budget scrutiny process that front line services would be protected.

"This means that the service area leadership team structure would need to be reviewed and a head of service post deleted to achieve part of the approved savings measure.

"Discussions have been held between social care and housing leadership team which concluded that the services managed by the head of service will be relocated within the remaining structure.

"However a further redesign of the service area structure would need to follow."

A meeting last month heard the number of looked after children has risen over recent months - from 378 in June last year to 419 at the beginning of April.

South Wales Argus:

Chief executive Alison Ward warned the rise had to be halted, saying the authority was "heading towards unsustainability" with spiralling costs.


More than 700 parking tickets issued by Caerphilly council in first weeks of taking over enforcement – while Monmouthshire council handed out noneQuestions asked over Heads of the Valleys work delays

The report warns that if the severance costs are not approved the authority will need to find savings in the social care and housing department which could impact on front line services.

Councillors will decide the proposals at a full council meeting on Tuesday, May 14.

If approved arrangements would be made to write to the head of service confirming arrangements for their termination of employment.

Further plans on a new structure for the social care and housing department, following the redundancy, would then be developed, including a consultation with staff and trade unions as a consequence of the changes.