Moray Council’s chief executive will continue to hold responsibility for temporary appoints to senior council positions.
A move by Councillor Douglas Ross on Wednesday would have transferred the responsibility for such appointments to elected representatives.
However, the proposal – which was seconded by Councillor James Allan – suffered a clear defeat by 17 votes to three with one councillor abstaining.
The motion from Councillor Ross asked: “That Moray Council agrees that the delegated authority to the Chief Executive to appoint acting members of the Corporate Management team be transferred to the appointed committee made up of elected members which is convened when a vacancy becomes available.”
However, the majority of members felt the appointment of acting directors was an operational matter for the chief executive and that the status quo should be maintained.
Councillor Ross made the move after several exchanges in the council chamber over the decision to temporarily appoint a corporate director of Environmental Services in November last year.
He contested that the decision of the chief executive to make the appointment was known only to a handful of elected members.
A disappointed Councillor Ross said after Wednesday’s meeting: “My motion would have seen councillors, who currently sift all the applicants for the full post to form a shortleet and then the initial interview, to also select the individual to take on the role in an acting basis.
“For me that made perfect sense rather than leaving the choice to an unelected chief executive.”
The council currently has one corporate director post filled on an acting basis until such time as a permanent appointment is made.