THE APPOINTMENT of politicians to some senior posts on Wrexham Council has been put on hold amid a rumoured row among members of the ruling coalition.

The local authority held its AGM yesterday afternoon at which independent Mark Pritchard was reappointed to the post of leader for a further year, while Conservative Hugh Jones kept his role as deputy.

However, the allocation of committee chairs has been delayed until early next month as sources revealed the Tories and another independent group led by Cllr David A Bithell have reached an impasse over who gets one of the positions.

While both groups have eight seats on the council, a numerical imbalance has been caused by the recent switch by former Conservative Paul Rogers from being non-aligned to joining Cllr Pritchard’s faction.

It means one of the other two ruling groups would have to sacrifice a chair’s seat, which comes with a salary of around £22,300, but neither is said to be willing to concede.

An extraordinary general meeting is now due to be held on Wednesday, June 5 with talks set to be held to ease the rift in the meantime.

But concerns have been raised about the added cost of holding it at a time the council faces a projected budget shortfall of almost £10m over the next two years.

Speaking at the meeting of all 52 councillors, Plaid Cymru leader Marc Jones said: “We were only told of this an hour before this meeting and I would like clarification from the chief legal officer as to why we weren’t able to sort this out or why the coalition group wasn’t able to sort this out before the meeting.

“If we have an extraordinary general meeting again it will cost us money.

“I don’t think we should be looking to spend more money for something which is an administrative, procedural and internal issue, which could be sorted out far faster and is very regrettable.”

The current membership of the leading executive board was kept the same during the meeting, as councillors were told the authority would have no political leadership otherwise.

However, officials said the composition could be altered at a later date.

Chief governance officer Sioned Wyn Davies said: “It is only today that this issue was brought to my attention.

“We have endeavoured to support the process and try to find a pragmatic solution for this meeting to agree for a further meeting of the council to be convened in two weeks.

“It is important this afternoon that the executive board members are appointed because this would leave us without an effective executive if that were not done this afternoon.

“That can be changed at a future meeting if that is what the wish is.”

The majority of councillors voted in favour of holding an EGM to sort the appointments out next month with only Plaid Cymru members showing their opposition, and one abstention from non-aligned independent Mike Davies.