Are council officers paid too much?

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THE spectrum of pay for council workers has been revealed with a £100,000 swing from the lowest to the highest.

Since April 1, 2012, councils have been required to publish statements of top officers’ pay and the difference between the highest and lowest salaries.

The lowest paid Chichester District Council employees work at Westgate Leisure for £6.19 an hour – the national minimum wage. The only district council staff who earn less than the minimum wage are those on government-sponsored apprenticeship schemes.

The highest paid member of staff, chief executive Diane Shepherd, is paid £59.38 an hour, including a car allowance – £114,572 a year.

Westgate Leisure staff are the only council staff, apart from chief officers, whose pay is not set by the National Joint Council (NJC) for Local Government Services.

The lowest salary on the NJC scale is equivalent to £12,145 a year – £6.2951 per hour.

The statement includes publication of the salaries of the 13 officers paid more than £58,200 a year.

In a report to cabinet earlier this month, senior personnel manager Tim Radcliffe said the number of officers included in the list had increased since last year.

“This is as a result of the fact that a number of assistant director posts were regraded to take account of their additional responsibilities following the restructure approved by cabinet and council in May, 2012,” said the report.

“Nevertheless, savings in excess of £152,000 per annum were made as a result of the restructure.”

Speaking about the publication of the figures, cabinet member Josef Ransley said: “The publication of the senior pay policy is an important part of the council’s desire to be as transparent as possible with the way in which is spends public money.

“The council, like any other organisation, operates in a competitive job market.

“As a major local employer the council regularly reviews employment packages, even during times of economic downturn.

“This is to ensure it is able to attract the right staff with the right qualities to deliver important services to local people during such a challenging time.”

WHAT DO YOU THINK?

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