Chair of Citizens Advice Scotland to resign as critical review looms

Dominic Notarangelo has told CAS stakeholders he refused an offer of anonymity in the Deloitte report, which will be critical of trustees

The chair of Citizens Advice Scotland will resign before the publication of a critical review of how the charity is run.

In an email sent to CAS stakeholders, Dominic Notarangelo said he would resign at a meeting later this week, having been informed that his chairmanship was to be criticised by the review of the charity’s structure and practices, which is expected to be published in the next month.

The independent review, which is being carried out by the professional services firm Deloitte, comes after a turbulent few months at the charity. Its former chief executive, Margaret Lynch, was suspended in August last year, then dismissed earlier this year.

In the email, Notarangelo said he recognised that the report, an executive summary of which was sent to the charity, would be critical of several trustees, "most notably myself".

The email said that Notarangelo was offered the opportunity to avoid being mentioned in the report "if I resigned that day", but he refused the offer of anonymity.

"I was immediately aware that if I walked off with an amnesty then the members might never get to see the evidence that should be needed to take control of the association away from the members, and also that other trustees would be left to carry responsibility for any alleged shortcomings of the current governance," Notarangelo’s email said.

The email concluded: "I am keen to ensure that the meeting is not distorted by personal agendas and that there is a proper focus on changes to the structure of the association and how they will impact on our principles. I am now therefore committed to bringing my retirement forward and will resign forthwith."

Notarangelo previously defended the charity’s financial management in an open letter published in The Herald newspaper on 20 February this year.

A spokesman for CAS said the final version of the Deloitte report was expected in the next few weeks.

"CAS has not received a formal notification of the chair’s resignation at this time," he said.

"We can confirm that the CAS board have received an executive summary of the findings of the Deloitte report.

"The final report is scheduled to complete in July and will be discussed and reviewed by the board at this time in line with the agreed timeline. The views expressed by Mr Notarangelo are his personal views.

"CAS is still awaiting the Deloitte report and will respond to this in due course."

John Wilkes, one of CAS’s first external trustees, who served on the charity’s board between 2013 and 2015, said Notarangelo’s resignation was just part of wider reforms needed at the charity.

"I think he needed to move on as part of this whole process of change," said Wilkes.

"I think what it means to me is that the messages are starting to get through that we do need to change and perhaps their bubble has been pierced a bit."

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