Bucks County Council fat cats took home pay rises last year despite being in charge of struggling services

County council fat cats presiding over besieged services still took home wage increases last year - despite the authority grappling with a total cut in government funding.
Buckinghamshire County CouncilBuckinghamshire County Council
Buckinghamshire County Council

A report issued by the Tax Payers’ Alliance has revealed that two highly paid members of Buckinghamshire County Council received increases in pay between 2014/15 and 2015/16.

Neil Gibson (transport, economy and environment) received a pay rise of £4,950 and the former chief of communities, health and adult social care, - before Sheila Norris took over in 2017 - received a pay rise of £7,122 from 2015 to 2016.

The news comes after the council ringfenced three per cent of its five per cent council tax increase this year to pay for rising costs in adult social care.

And last month road commuters faced waits of up to three hours simply to get across Aylesbury in a week of roads chaos - promoting a petition to the council to urge action on the situation.

Over the next four years the council has to make £46million in savings. This is in part to a total stoppage of the grant that Bucks County Council receives from the Goverment, one of only two authorities so far to receive the cut which starts next year.

John O’Connell, the chief executive of the Tax Payers’ Alliance issued a statement saying: “Disappointingly, many local authorities are now responding to financial reality through further tax rises and reducing services rather than scaling back top pay.

“There are talented people in the public sector who are trying to deliver more for less, but the sheer scale of the packages raise serious questions about efficiency and priorities.”

A spokesman for Buckinghamshire County Council said: “In recent years, we have removed fringe benefits such as private healthcare and lease car benefits to senior employees. And our Delivering Successful Performance pay scheme ensures that any increase in salaries is tied to corresponding productivity and performance and not the length of time served, ensuring continuing cost-effectiveness for the taxpayer.”

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