Wednesday, 24 February 2010
Barnet Chief earns more than the Prime Minister
A report published by Barnet Council reveals that Chief Executive Nick Walkley is paid a basic wage of £200,000 a year - £20,000 more than the salary paid to his predecessor Leo Boland, and more than Prime Minister Gordon Brown is entitled to receive.
Mr Walkley’ s deputy, Brian Reynolds, is paid a staggering £180,000 a year - no doubt as a sop for missing out on the top job.
It is worth remembering that Mr Walkley was Barnet’s Executive Director for Resources when £27.4 million of taxpayers money was deposited in failing Icelandic banks and the Aerodrome Road bridge project went £11 million over budget. To reward him with a basic salary of £200,000 (plus pension) is grossly offensive to Barnet’s hardworking taxpayers - many of whom have lost their jobs in the recession.
In December 2008, the then Shadow Community Secretary Eric Pickles announced that the next Conservative government would purge the fat cats from Town Halls and Officers earning six figure salaries would lose their jobs.
A Party spokesman said at the time: “There is super-inflation of chief executive pay that bears no correlation to the level of services they provide. There is a bureaucracy and self-feeding hierarchy of senior officials that are completely unaccountable to the local community...This urgently needs to be addressed.”
In 2002, when the Conservatives won control of the council from Labour/LibDems, the Chief Executive was paid £113,100 a year - a salary which most people would still consider very generous today. Yet despite the Conservative Party’s clearly stated policy with respect to chief officer pay, Barnet’s ruling Tories are happy to keep splashing the cash with absolutely no regard for the taxpayers who have to pay the bill.