Town Hall Rich List: Council chief executive salary figures revealed

The figures were published by pressure group The TaxPayers’ Alliance, which releases a ‘Town Hall Rich List’,

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A list revealing the salaries of Nottinghamshire‘s council chief executives has been published.

The figures were published by pressure group The TaxPayers’ Alliance, which releases a ‘Town Hall Rich List’, showing the number of council officer posts across the country which earn more than £100,000 a year.

Newark and Sherwood District Council has been revealed as having the highest-paid chief executive of all district councils Nottinghamshire.

The council also employs a deputy chief executive, meaning the authority spends a combined total of £233,723 a year on the two posts.

None of the Nottinghamshire councils made the top ten on the list of highest-paid posts, but the figures show Newark and Sherwood District Council spend more on its chief executive, John Robinson, than any other borough or district council.

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Mr Robinson’s salary at Newark is £128,281, which is higher than all the other six district council chief executives, and also higher than the Nottingham City Council chief executive, Mel Barrett.

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All of the Nottinghamshire council chief exectuive roles command salaries above £100,000 a year, and some officer positions which are unique to their respective authorities are paid higher than the chief executive.

The chief executive for Gedling gets paid £115,753, in Broxtowe £115,328, in Bassetlaw £121,404, in Rushcliffe £113,316, in Mansfield £116,000 and in Ashfield £114,761.

Newark also has a deputy chief executive as well, who is paid £105,442 a year. The only other local authority to have a deputy is Broxtowe Borough Council, which pays £97,027 a year for the role.

Nottinghamshire County Council spends more than any of the other local authorities in the county, with its chief executive Anthony May paid £185,386 a year.

A spokesman for Newark and Sherwood District Council defended the wages it pays its chief executive and deputy chief executive.

In a statement, the Conservative-run authority said:  “Newark and Sherwood is geographically the largest district council out of seven in Nottinghamshire and covers approximately a third of the county with 65,134 hectares of land including 84 civil parishes and 21 wards.

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“As a district council we deliver essential services to around 121,000 residents across 56,780 households in the district. We employ 634 people and for the current financial year 2022/23, our annual gross budget for non-housing services is just under £48million.

 “We are one of the few Nottinghamshire authorities who have our own social housing stock of more than 5,541 homes with an associated annual budget of £26.5m.

“In addition, the council has capital schemes to deliver over the next four years to a value of £130m. The council’s senior management worked to secure £25m for Newark’s Towns Fund Deal, which will leverage other third party funding in order to provide new educational, training and employment opportunities.

“More recently, £20m of Levelling Up funding has been secured to unlock the completion of the A1 to A46 link road that will enable completion of the development of around 3,000 new homes to the south of the district.   

“Newark and Sherwood District Council, nor any local authority in Nottinghamshire, is included in the Town Hall Rich List Report, which determines the top ten or twenty individual salaries, bonuses and expenses. We do not offer bonuses for our employees.

“The data from the TaxPayers’ Alliance shows that the salary for our chief executive is ranked 188 out of 317 local authorities and 6 out of 24 for the East Midlands and is proportionate to the high level of responsibility of the role.”

The Local Democracy Reporting Service asked each local authority to provide reasons for the £100,000-plus salaries. Some responded, others did not.

Nottingham City Council:

  • Corporate director – development and growth – £130,859
  • Corporate director – covid response and recovery – £123,042
  • Corporate director – people – £143, 850
  • Corporate director – commercial and operations £38,679 + 88,170
  • Chief executive – Mel Barratt – £104,891
  • Director of Public Health – £107,362
  • Director for legal governance and monitoring – £103,445

A Nottingham City Council spokesman said: “Large unitary authorities have annual budgets in the hundreds of millions of pounds and need high-calibre managers to steer a wide range of complex services – from care of the elderly through to housing, public transport and many more.

“Nottingham City Council serves one of the biggest and fastest-growing cities in the country, delivering public services to almost 350,000 people.

“It’s important to remember that more than 99.9 per cent of our staff are not in this pay category and are dedicated to delivering the vital local services that people have particularly relied on over the past two years of the pandemic.

“Senior manager and director-level pay in the private sector in similar-sized organisations is generally much higher than it is in councils.”

Nottinghamshire County Council

  • Chief executive – Anthony May – £185,386
  • Corporate director – £147,118
  • Corporarte director – £137,494
  • Corporate director – £132,356
  • Service director – £102,974
  • Service director – £102,974
  • Director of Public Health – £98,869
  • Two undisclosed posts, both at £102,500

Anthony May, chief executive of Nottinghamshire County Council, said: “Nottinghamshire County Council is the 10th largest local authority in England and directly employs 7,500 council employees, 14,000 including our maintained schools, with a further 1,471 people employed in the council’s arms-length companies.

“The county council has a gross budget of £1bn and provides more than 400 services to a population of over 810,000 people, including some of the county’s most vulnerable people.

“The council is committed to openness and transparency in its approach to setting the pay of our most senior officers whose salaries are independently evaluated external to the council .

“The number of employees receiving over £100,000 total remuneration is eight, which is in line with the average across all local authorities in the UK.

“The county council has been at the forefront of Nottinghamshire’s response to the pandemic and will play a key role in the county’s recovery. It is important that the council continues to attract the best quality leaders.”

Rushcliffe Borough Council

  • Chief executive – Kath Marriott – £113,316
  • Executive director £90,705
  • Executive director £87,906
  • Executive director £87,906
  • Executive director £85,569

 A Rushcliffe Borough Council spokesman said: “We deliver high quality services to over 115,000 people across the borough with the lowest council tax rate anywhere in Nottinghamshire and within the lowest 25 per cent in the country.

“Our dedicated teams across the organisation balance the council’s priorities on the environment, quality of life, efficient services and sustainable growth bucking the trend to similar-sized councils and operating services with no debt.

“With other Local Resilience Forum partners, the council has been among those fronting the response to Covid-19, playing a vital role in distributing over £36m of grants and £19.2m of reduction in business rate bills and assisting communities’ transition to the central government living with Covid plan.”

Broxtowe Borough Council

  • Chief executive – Ruth Hyde – £115,328
  • Deputy chief executive – £97,027

Gedling Borough Council

  • Chief executive – Mike Hill – £115,753

Newark and Sherwood District Council  

  • Chief executive – John Robinson – £128,281
  • Deputy chief executive – £105,442
  • Director – £85,924
  • Director £85,924
  • Director £85,298

Bassetlaw District Council

  • Chief executive  – £121,404. David Armiger is currently the interim chief executive so it is not certain if he is paid this wage.

Mansfield District Council

  • Chief executive – £116,000
  • Strategic manager – £84,000
  • Strategic manager – £82,000

Mike Robinson, co-chief executive officer (Interim) at Mansfield District Council, said: “All the senior officer salaries at Mansfield District Council are subject to approval by the council’s Personnel Committee after benchmarking salaries across the East Midlands for local authorities.

“Pay awards are made in line with the Joint National Committee for Chief Officers. The salaries are more or less in line with the average in this region for these roles.”

Ashfield District Council

  • Chief executive – Theresa Hodgkinson – £114,761

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