New mum quits council cabinet: ‘It has been an enormous privilege’

Councillor Sarah Betteley PNL-151013-104915001
Councillor Sarah Betteley PNL-151013-104915001

A Labour councillor has resigned from her position on the cabinet because she can’t “do it justice”.

Sarah Betteley says a change in family circumstances prompted her to step down from the role on Milton Keynes Council last night.

Described as a “rising star”, when brought into the cabinet by council leader Pete Marland last year, Councillor Betteley was responsible for improving customer service and leading on expanding the cultural and tourist offer of the city.

In a statement released this morning, Ms Betteley said it had been an “enormous privilege” to serve on the cabinet, but that she had decided to take a step back.

She said: “Being a cabinet member is a huge responsibility and I believe that to do the role properly needs a large time commitment.

“I do not believe I would do the role, and therefore the tax payers of MK, justice if I was to carry on at the present time.”

The 29-year-old, who gave birth in January will remain working as a councillor for Central Milton Keynes.

It is not yet known who will replace the new mum as cabinet member for community safety and public access, which has an allowance of £10,753 a year.

While the Labour group leader decides who will take over, Ms Betteley’s role will be split between cabinet members Councillor Rob Middleton and Hannah O’Neill.

Councillor Pete Marland said: “I’d like to thank Sarah for her work in the cabinet.

“She has done a great job with a portfolio of change at a really difficult time for local councils.

“I totally respect her decision, although she will be a loss to the cabinet.

“I will be making further announcements about how this changed the cabinet portfolios in the near future.”