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Fury over £75,800 salary for new role at County Hall
5:10pm Saturday 4th August 2012 in News
AN assistant chief executive has been appointed at Worcestershire County Council – on a £75,800 salary.
Clare Mitchell, a former chief officer for the NHS and production manager at Hovis, has been promoted in-house to the role.
The salary will steadily increase to a high of £83,490.
Her old position of head of change has been deleted – a job which involved working on a controversial plan to save £90 million by 2015.
The new title means she will continue to implement the cuts programme alongside the overall leadership of chief executive Trish Haines, and take on extra responsibilities.
County Hall’s opposition Labour group has reacted angrily to the move, saying the salary is far in excess what most rank-and-file workers get.
Councillor Peter McDonald, leader of the Labour group, said: “We should not be paying this kind of money to people at the top – what message does this send to the workers at the bottom of the pile?”
Councillor Tom Wells, deputy leader of the Liberal Democrat group, said: “At a time of swingeing cuts this looks unfortunate.
“Residents would rather see the money spent on frontline services.”
But the council says it is making ongoing savings in management costs and that Ms Mitchell’s old role paid the same rate.
The authority is deleting the head of community leadership role, which currently belongs to Simon Adams and pays £75,000.
It was revealed in June that the authority is also making two directors redundant.
Diane Tilley, director of planning, economy and performance, is leaving her £107,000-a-year job in September, while adult services director Eddie Clarke is being axed from his £124,000 role next year.
Mrs Haines said: “We now have a smaller, tighter senior management arrangement able to lead the council in responding to the challenges ahead.
“This builds on the £3.5 million savings made through management costs over the last four years and the planned savings of a further £3 million over the next three years.”