NEW committee stuctures and office bearers have been agreed at a full meeting of Highland Council today (Thursday) in Inverness.
There will be four strategic committees - Finance, Housing and Resources; Planning Environment and Development; Transport Environmental and Community Services and Adult and Children’s Services. All these committees will comprise 22 members and will meet six times a year.
There will also be a Pensions Committee, comprising 11 members; an Audit and Scrutiny Committee, (22 members); a Community Safety, Public Engagement and Equalities Committee (15 members); and a Gaelic Implementation Group, (11 members and 3 members of Bord na Gaidhlig or their nominees). All will meet quarterly.
An Inverness City Committee, comprising 26 members, will meet six times each year and a Caithness and Sutherland Area Committee, comprising 16 members, will meet quarterly. They will pilot specific responsibilities from the outset with a view to paving the way for area committees for Ross and Cromarty (19 members); Nairn and Badenoch (8 members); and Lochaber and Skye (11 members). All will meet quarterly.
Regulatory committees, overseeing planning and licensing issues, will see the continuation of a Planning Review Body of nine members, meeting six-weekly; as well as a North Planning Application Committee of 17 members and a South Committee of 19 members, both meeting monthly.
A Highland Licensing Committee of 12 members and a Highland Licensing Board of 10 members will meet six times each year.
Office-bearers appointed are: vice-conveners – Maxine Smith (Cromarty Firth) and Hamish Wood (Aird and Loch Ness).
Chairman of Finance, Housing and Resources Committee – David Fallows (Badenoch and Strathspey); vice-chairman – David Alston (Black Isle).
Chairman of Planning, Environment and Development Committee and the Planning Review Body – Thomas Prag (Inverness South); vice-chairman – George Farlow (North West and Central Sutherland).
Chairman of Transport, Environmental and Community Services Committee – Graham Phillips (East Sutherland and Edderton); vice-chairman – Bet McAllister (Inverness Central).
Chairman of Adult and Children’s Services Committee – Alasdair Christie (Inverness Ness-side); vice-chairman - Liz MacDonald (Nairn).
Chairman of Pensions Committee – David Fallows (Badenoch and Strathspey).
Chairman of Community Safety, Public Engagement and Equalities Committee – Drew Millar (Eilean a Cheo).
Chairman of Gaelic Implementation Group – Hamish Fraser (Eilean a Cheo).
Champions’ Co-ordinator and Children’s Champion – Linda Munro (North West and Central Sutherland).
Leader of the Opposition - Carolyn Wilson (Cromarty Firth).
Chairman of Audit & Scrutiny Committee: Margaret Davidson (Aird and Loch Ness); vice-chairman: Bill Fernie (Wick).