Since May 2011 this council has been operating a 'Strong Leader' Cabinet system.
The council is composed of 54 councillors who are elected by a simple majority and serve for four years.
Councillors are democratically accountable to residents of their ward. The overriding duty of councillors is to the whole community, but they have a special duty to their constituents, including those who did not vote for them.
The leader and cabinet
The leader and cabinet meet regularly to make decisions on services and to implement policies. The council as a whole meets to decide on what policies the council will follow and how much money it will spend.
Overview and scrutiny committees
There are two overview and scrutiny committees: Executive, and Corporate and Environmental
Both committees scrutinise cabinet decisions and assist in working up policy, conducting in-depth reviews of activity both internal and external to the council.
For more information regarding the committee's work programmes visit overview and scrutiny.