As a portfolio holder, no day is the same

Coun Sally Slade
Coun Sally Slade
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CABINET CALL: By South Holland District Councillor Sally Slade

What is a portfolio holder? We are members of the cabinet who are responsible for a portfolio, or group, of responsibilities.

As the portfolio holder for legal, performance and democratic services, I am responsible for all our legal work, as well as elections and voter registration.

Performance includes how we work and whether we can make efficiencies in any area.

Councillors tend to work from home and many of us have other jobs, so we have to be flexible and very organised.

A typical day for me will normally start with making a cup of coffee and sitting down at my desk to look at my email inbox.

I might start by answering an email from a resident of my ward about a local issue, or I could be talking to HR about the sickness figures.

I may well have a request for funding to look at, or a meeting to arrange to discuss future IT provision.

I usually check social media and help to promote events around my patch.

I might then drive into Spalding for a meeting at the council offices.

This week, I met up with our democratic services manager to discuss the plans for Local Democracy Week.

This will run from October 10 to 16, and is when we focus on de-mystifying the democratic process.

We explain how to register to vote, how we hold an election and we try to attract the interest of younger people.

In previous years, it has included presentations to a local secondary school and press interviews with new and experienced councillors, both of which I have been involved with.

Back at my desk, I could be checking notes from a recent meeting with senior council managers and acting on some of the queries.

I will also be looking ahead at the agenda for a forthcoming meeting, and making sure that I am thoroughly prepared.

Some council meetings are in the evening, so I might be back there for, say, full council or for a training session.

Or I might be at home, writing a report for colleagues, or even a column for the local paper; no day is the same.