BEHIND closed doors and under strict orders for secrecy, Powys County Councillors are expected to approve a severance package worth over £180,000 to "terminate" chief executive, Jeremy Patterson's contract by "mutual consent."

He is expected to remain on gardening leave until the end of September.

After he leaves his £189,000 a year post The Council will start to look for a new chief executive.

The decision needs to be made at a full council meeting as the proposed settlement costs more than £100,000.

Current acting chief executive, Mohammed Mehmet is contracted to be there until the end of January, and The County Times understands that whoever takes over at the helm,will need to be in place by the time Mr Mehmet leaves Llandrindod Wells.

Councillors have been warned by council solicitor Clive Pinney of the need to secrecy and will be given the package proposals at 2pm followed by an explanation of what they need to decide by Steve Thomas, chief executive of the Welsh Local Government Association, (WLGA)

The meeting will adjourn for a time to allow members to digest the information before they are allowed to discuss it.

After it the scandal at Powys' Children's Services emerged last October following a damning inspection report by the Care and Social Services Inspectorate (CSSIW) now known ad the Care Inspectorate Wales (CIW) Mr Patterson faced calls to resign.

Days later on October he became unwell and was signed off as unfit to work.

The Business Case for the contract termination says that his period of sick pay ended in April, "but in the spirit of goodwill" the leader (Cllr Rosemarie Harris) and acting chief executive agreed that the period of full sick pay would be extended.

The document reveals proposal in total is worth just under £181, 500 with a compensatory lump sum worth £116, 915.

The proposal states: "This is to mutually agree to terminate the chief executive's employment on the grounds of efficiency of service with effect from September 30, 2018, which is considered in the best interest of both parties, the Council and the Chief Executive.

The report stresses that the decision is "NOT" a dismissal."

The report adds: "It is clear, that the Council needs o make decision which will allow it to move forward as it implements the organisational changes and performance improvements which will allow it to move forward as it implements the organisational changes and performance improvements needed to address concerns raised by CIW and others about leadership and other issues in Children's Services and corporately.

It can only doe this with having strong, strategic executive leadership from a permanent chief executive.

A spokesman for Powys County said: "We don't comment on the issues relating to members of staff."