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About the directorate

The Finance and Legal Directorate has a key role in ensuring that we are a dynamic and sustainable organisation capable of achieving the aims of the Council Plan and ultimately on realising its Future Council vision by 2030. In doing this, we face the particular challenges of our financial position.

The Finance and Legal Directorate consists of Financial Services, Law and Governance, Revenues and Benefits, Audit Services and Information Governance, all reporting to the Director of Finance and Legal.

We aim to:

  • Ensure the financial viability of the Council, addressing the particular challenges that come from being a low-taxing, low-spending authority with a low level of reserves
  • Continue to develop our administration of Benefits and collection of Council Tax and Business Rates as we recover from the impacts of the pandemic
  • Build on work already carried out to improve the effectiveness of council governance, risk management and internal control

Section 151 officer

Section 151 of the Local Government Act 1972 places a duty on the Council to make arrangements for the proper administration of its financial affairs, and to nominate an officer to have responsibility for the administration of those matters.

In Dudley, the section 151 officer is the Director of Finance and Legal.

Monitoring officer

The Monitoring Officer is responsible (in consultation with the Chief Executive and Section 151 Officer) for ensuring the lawfulness and fairness of decision making and advising whether decisions are consistent with the budget and policy framework. They are responsible for the operation of our Constitution and matters relating to the conduct of Councillors and officers.

In Dudley, the monitoring officer is the Lead for Law and Governance.

About the director, Iain Newman

Iain joined the Council as a graduate trainee accountant/auditor in 1988. He qualified as a Chartered Public Finance Accountant (CPFA) in 1992 and has subsequently worked in various roles in Audit and then Accountancy providing financial support to a number of different council services.

He became the Treasurer (Section 151 Officer) in 2010 and then Chief Officer (subsequently Director) of Finance and Legal in 2014. Over the years he has had the good fortune to work with, to be led by and to lead teams of very able people from a range of professional disciplines.