Labour’s new political assistant started work today at Brighton and Hove City Council.
Liam Ronan, 25, has taken the post on a temporary contract which runs until just after the local elections in May.
He will support the work of the group of 13 Labour councillors on the authority, having joined from Sheffield City Council where he held a similar post.
The party and the council attracted criticism when the post was advertised in November, although the Conservative and Green groups also employ council-funded political assistants.
Only the two-strong Liberal Democrats don’t have a political assistant although the Lib Dems do employ them in other parts of the country.
The job involves, among other things, carrying out research on behalf of councillors and liaising with officers, the media and outside organisations on behalf of council members.
Most large councils employ political assistants to help councillors as many councillors have full-time jobs.
The use of political assistants has grown at a time when the demands of being a councillor and the public’s expectations of their councillors have grown.
Mr Ronan takes over from Sarah Owen who left to work for Peter Skinner, the Labour MEP for South East England, the European Parliament constituency that includes Brighton and Hove.
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