Get involved! Send your photos, video, news & views by texting HT NEWS to 80360 or e-mail us
Herefordshire Council expense claims increase
HEREFORDSHIRE councillors claimed £681,555 in expenses over the past financial year, with the biggest rise coming in claims for travel, food and drink - up by more than £25,000 on the previous sum.
The final overall figure was up from £676,262 the previous year and breaks down to basic allowances (£422,782 up from £416,999 in 2010/11), special allowances (£195,859 down from £221,708 in 2010/11), and travel and subsistence (£62,914 up from £37,555 in 2010/11).
The cash-strapped council continues to pay out six figure salaries too. Outgoing chief executive Chris Bull stayed on the same £183,724 salary (including fees and allowances) he had over 2010/11 with £38,766 worth of pension contributions (up from £37,479 in 2010/11) pushing his total remuneration up to £222,490 - a rise on the £221,203 figure from the previous year.
Forty-five per cent of Mr Bull’s salary is surcharged to the Primary Care Trust (PCT).
This week the future for the post was caught up in another council secrecy row - see more on this story in tomorrow’s Hereford Times.
Other big earning posts on the council over the 2011/12 (as confirmed by the latest statement of accounts) were:
• Deputy Chief Executive - £129,999 (45 per cent surcharged to the PCT) pushed up to a total remuneration of £157,428 by £27,429 worth of pension contributions - up from a £151,736 total the previous year.
• Director for Places & Communities - £111,909 pushed up to a total remuneration of £135,683 by £23,612 in pension contributions - up from £22,279 on the 2010/11 total paid to the post’s previous title Director of Sustainability for Places & Communities.
• Chief Officer - Finance and Commercial (formerly director of resources) £102,808 pushed up to a total remuneration of £124,500 by £21,692 in pension contributions - down from the £22,279 previous year.
Salaries for the deputy chief executive and director of places & communities represented rises on the figures for 2010/11.
That for the deputy chief executive was up by nearly £4,000 on the £126,027 paid to a title assumed in April 2010, and that for the Director of Places & Communities rose by nearly £2,300 on the £109,212 paid in 2010/11 to the previous title.
Both salary and total remuneration the Chief Officer - Finance and Commercial fell from the 2010/11 figures (salary - £102,808 down from £109,212 in 2010/11 and total remuneration £124,500 down from £131,491).
The council currently has 129 employees on total remuneration (excluding pension contributions) of between £58,000 - £185,000. In 2010/11 there were 147.
Five employees are earning between £110,000-£185,000, one on between £100,000-£105,000, one on £90,000-£95,000, two on £85,000-£90,000, two on £80,000-£85,000 and 118 on £50,000 and £80,000.
The council paid out a total of £211,000 in compensation for loss of office to its head of asset management (left in June 2011 with £57,135), head of communications (left in April 2011 with £34,281), head of policy and performance (left in April 2011 with £34,281), assistant director, safeguarding and vulnerable children (left in June 2011 with £30,381).
Each of these payouts were boosted by pension contributions that, in total remuneration, ranged from £65,833 - £39,139.
All told, the council paid out just over £3m in “exit packages” covering the cost of compulsory and other redundancies over 2011/12, up from just over £2 million the previous year.