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These are the top salaries paid at Cambridgeshire County Council

Questions have been raised over spending as it emerges top council figures took home hefty pay packe..

By admin , in Cambridge , at April 11, 2018

Questions have been raised over spending as it emerges top council figures took home hefty pay packets last year.

Figures analysed by the Tax Payers Alliance show that the Chief Executive of Cambridgeshire County Council, Gillian Beasley, was paid £175,382 in the year 2016-17 (the most recent year for which the information has been published).

The councils Executive Director for Economy, Transport and Environment, Graham Hughes, was also paid over £100,000 a year, receiving £127.755 in the year 2016-17.

John O'Connell, Chief Executive of the TaxPayers Alliance, said “staggering pay outs” sums were still being paid despite council cut backs in other areas.

Mr OConnell said: “The average council tax bill has gone up by more than £900 over the last 20 years and spending has gone through the roof.

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“Disappointingly, many local authorities are now responding to financial reality through further tax rises and reducing services rather than scaling back top pay.

“Despite many in the public sector facing a much-needed pay freeze to help bring the public finances under control, many town hall bosses are continuing to pocket huge remuneration packages, with staggering pay-outs for those leaving their jobs despite a £95,000 cap passed by the last government.

"There are talented people in the public sector who are trying to deliver more for less, but the sheer scale of these packages raise serious questions about efficiency and priorities. The government must also act to implement the exit payment cap that was passed in 2016."

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The council said the right people needed to be recruited. They said many officers, including Gillian Beasley, took on duties on other councils and were actually very good value for money.

A Cambridgeshire County Council spokesperson said: “Councils are large, complex organisations and need to recruit and retain the best people to lead them and make sure that they are effective. Cambridgeshire County Council spends more than £820m per annum to deliver in the region of 1,300 different services that make a huge difference to peoples everyday lives.

“But we are also aware that the majority of the money we spend comes from the public purse so our focus is on making every penny count.

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"Our innovative work in this area sees a number of our most senior roles including our Chief Executive Gillian Beasley, our Executive Director of People and Communities Wendi Ogle-Welbourn and our Director of Public Health Dr Liz Robin, shared with Peterborough City Council, making the most efficient use of their time and skills across both authorities.

“Sharing further senior roles with Peterborough City Council led to an overall reduction in the costs of management posts of £1million in the past financial year.

“Council officers senior pay is always decided by democratically elected councillors in an open and transparent way – in addition all council officer salaries of more than £50,000 per year are published on our website annually.

“A recent independent report produced for the council by Grant Thornton in January, shows that amongst the group of our closest comparable county councils Cambridgeshire has the lowest top council salary at just less than half that offered by the highest payer in the group, and only 1.1 per cent of its costs are spent on management.”

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