Pay boost for council officers

Lou Williams
Lou Williams

Pay rises of around £20,000 each have been awarded to two Peterborough City Council officers after they were chosen to job share at Cambridgeshire County Council.

Adrian Chapman and Lou Williams will be paid £119,349 a year after both councils agreed to share more senior managers.

The arrangement will lead to savings of just over £1 million for the county council and £200,000 for the city council, but Cllr Mohammed Jamil, a Labour city councillor, believes the move could lead to the authorities formally joining up once again in the future.

“I’m mindful we are being morphed back into Cambridgeshire County Council bit by bit,” he said. We are going down a dangerous path.”

Cllr Jamil was on the committee which selected the new joint managers, a process he described as “making the best of a bad job.” He added that the chosen candidates had all “interviewed very well,” but he acknowledged that the new salaries are “very high.”

A city council spokesman said: “The level of remuneration was evaluated against widely recognised advice from the Hay Group which benchmarks across similar organisations.”

The appointments see Wendi Ogle-Welbourn confirmed as executive director for people and communities for both councils.

Subject to approval from the city council’s employment committee, Mr Chapman will be joint service director for community and safety services and Mr Williams joint service director for children’s services and safeguarding.

Charlotte Black was appointed joint service director covering adult services and Will Patten was appointed joint service director covering commissioning. Both worked for the county council.

City council leader Cllr John Holdich said: “By introducing this new management structure we can do better and go further - pooling expertise, sharing skills and removing duplication.

“We will also use this joint arrangement to buy services for our residents through our joint purchasing panel. This should allow us to make even greater savings to reinvest in these much needed services.”

Both authorities currently share the same chief executive in Gillian Beasley.