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Minister for Finance and Local Government Rebecca Evans has today announced the appointments of Frances Duffy as Chair and Beverley Smith as Member of the Independent Remuneration Panel for Wales.

First published:
1 June 2022
Last updated:

The Independent Remuneration Panel for Wales is the independent body whose principal function is to make determinations on the payments principal councils, community councils, fire and rescue authorities and national park authorities make to their elected members.

Frances has held a number of posts within the Health and Social Services Department, Welsh Government, joining in late 2013 and working on NHS service change, sponsorship of the NHS Wales Informatics Service overseeing the development and delivery of the digital strategy for the health and care system in Wales  and promoting innovation within  NHS Wales.

In her last post, Frances was accountable for driving forward the reform of primary care in Wales- an ambitious programmes of contract change and reform, focussed on greater service integration across all primary care services – General Practice, Dentistry, Optometry, Pharmacy and Community health services, to bring care closer to home and promote health and well- being. She and her team also work alongside the NHS in Wales, and the Chief Scientific Advisor for Health, to drive forward innovation in healthcare and accelerate healthcare technology adoption.

Frances previously worked in transport policy and delivery - as Director of Transport for the Welsh Government and before that, Director of Strategy and Investment, and then Director of Rail for Transport Scotland.  In those roles Frances was responsible for large portfolios of investment, in road, rail and public transport; setting strategic investment priorities overseeing project delivery and management of the Rail Franchises.

Frances joined the Civil Service as a trainee Inspector of Taxes, specialising in large business corporation tax and the life insurance sector. When the new Scottish Parliament was set up, Frances worked on the implementation of the Scottish Variable Tax powers and then moved to the Scottish Executive, where she worked on housing policy before moving to transport policy.

Frances was educated in Scotland and holds a BA Business degree from the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow. She has successfully completed the Major Projects Leadership Academy programme, run by Oxford University Said Business School and the UK Government Cabinet Office and was an accredited IPA Gateway Reviewer. Frances has also taken on the role as Head of Profession for Project and Programme Management for the Welsh Government. She has recently retired from the Civil Service.

Beverley Smith has a strong background in public services and is an experienced chair and board member. Her most recent role was as Chief Executive of North West Leicestershire council. Beverley is also the Chair of the Local Democracy and Boundary Commission for Wales.

Finance and Local Government Minister Rebecca Evans said:

“I extend a warm welcome to Frances and Beverley to the Commission and know they will play a crucial role in its work.”

These were direct appointments made in accordance with the Governance Code for Public Appointments. All appointments are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process. However, in accordance with the original Nolan recommendations, there is a requirement for the political activity of appointees (if any declared) to be published. No individual has carried out any political activities in the last five years or holds any other Ministerial appointment.

Frances Duffy will be paid a daily fee of £337 per day and Beverley Smith will be paid a daily fee of £282 with a time commitment of 1-2 days per month.