Sheila Wheeler has left her role as chief executive of Somerset County Council "by mutual agreement", it has been announced.
The revelation comes after a closed-door meeting at the council offices this morning to discuss the future direction of the chief executive, who has been absent from the council on full pay for three months
A spokesman said: "Sheila’s arrival at the council in February 2010 coincided with the first austerity measures coming into force resulting in major budget cuts.
"She led the council through a prolonged period where significant service and staffing reductions had to be made.
"Sheila has also brought major changes to the way the council operates and is run and we wish her well for the future."
Until a replacement is appointed, Patrick Flaherty the deputy chief executive will serve as the acting chief executive.