Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Councillor OK in Her Role in Council Office

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Councillor OK in Her Role in Council Office

Article excerpt

A NEWLY-ELECTED councillor is free to continue in the role, despite concerns that it could conflict with her day job at a nearby local authority.

Angela Hamilton, who was elected as a Labour councillor in South Tyneside last week, works as a policy and communications officer at Newcastle City Council.

Such jobs - because they involve speaking to the press - are 'politically restricted' at many councils, meaning those who hold them are disqualified from standing for election in order to maintain the political neutrality of the council's non-elected officials.

However, Newcastle City Council says that Coun Hamilton's job does not fall under that category because of the 'wide range' of tasks she performs.

Under the Local Government and Housing Act 1989 any role that is deemed to involve 'speaking on behalf of the authority on a regular basis to journalists or broadcasters' should be politically restricted.

A council spokesman said: "The role of communication officer is not politically restricted at the city council. …

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