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PM outstripped by town hall chiefs in expenses rich list

PUBLISHED: 16:01 02 April 2008 | UPDATED: 11:37 12 August 2010

COUNCIL bosses are getting paid more than the Prime Minister, research has revealed. The former chief executive

COUNCIL bosses are getting paid more than the Prime Minister, research has revealed.

The former chief executive of Bexley council, Nick Johnson, came fifth in the 'Town Hall Rich List' conducted by the Tax Payers Alliance last Thursday.

Mr Johnson was paid £203,000, including an £8,000 bonus and £11,000 for 'choices and election duties' - £14,151 more than Gordon Brown's salary of £188,849.

Bromley council refused to provide full information for the three years they were asked for.

However, they did reveal their chief executive David Bartlett received £154,000 for the year 2006-07.

A spokesman for the Tax Payers Alliance said: "Taxpayers have a right to know how much senior town hall officials are being paid because only then can we judge whether they deserve their remuneration. Too often, council executives are rewarded handsomely even when they fail.

"Families and pensioners are struggling with the demands of yet another council tax rise, and councils owe it to them to cut back on executive pay hikes."

Chairman of Bexley Pensioners Forum, Terry Murphy, said: "The Prime Minister is getting his money from the taxes of the whole country and the chief executives of councils are getting theirs from the council tax payers.

"I agree that the wage should go up each year, but the fact they are getting more money than the Prime Minister is a disgrace.

"They have a much smaller area to look after than him. It is a sorry state that we have to come to this."

A spokesperson for Bromley council said: "The salaries of our senior officers are independently reviewed each year taking into account relevant market factors.

"Given the demanding nature of these roles and that our council tax remains one of the lowest in outer London, we believe this represents good value for money, and in its most recent report the government's independent watchdog judged the council as excellent in it's effective use of resources."

A spokesperson for Bexley council said: "The salary paid to managers and senior officers is set by the council taking into account the recommendations from the Hay Group.

"Seeking their advice helps to ensure that salaries payable to Bexley's officers remain competitive with similar local authorities and organisations.

"The salaries paid to individual members of staff are private, but the council's chief executive receives a salary in the range of £157,000 to £180,000, with the possibility of progression through outstanding performance to £203,391.

"The role of chief executive is significant in scope and accountability. It spans a very large number of technical and professional disciplines, and services to some 220,000 residents, along with a budget of around £0.5 billion."

marina.soteriou@archant.co.uk

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