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Cabinet member steps into row over council pay

Date published: 08 August 2014

OLDHAM Council has moved to clarify the salaries of its top earners following national research into the country’s highest paid local authority staff.

A report by the TaxPayers Alliance used data from 2011/12 to report that Oldham Council employed nine people on a wage higher than £100,000.

The posts were chief executive, executive director of neighbourhoods, executive director of commercial services, deputy chief executive, executive director of commissioning, borough treasurer and chief financial officer, chief of staff, borough solicitor and monitoring officer and director of adult social services.


Three of those posts — deputy chief executive, executive director of commissioning and borough treasurer — are now vacant and the council are only looking to recruit someone new to the borough treasurer role.

Two post-holders have also changed since 2011/2 with Carolyn Wilkins and Mark Reynolds replacing Charlie Parker and Claire Fish as chief executive and chief of staff respectively — both on lower basic salaries.

The current basic salaries (excluding pension) for the posts now are chief executive (Carolyn Wilkins) £160,000, executive director of neighbourhoods (Elaine McLean) £138,000, executive director of commercial services (Emma Alexander) £132,000, chief of staff (Mark Reynolds) £83,980, borough solicitor and monitoring officer (Paul Entwistle) £90,987 and executive director of adult social services (Paul Cassidy) £100,000.

Councillor Abdul Jabbar, Oldham Council cabinet member for finance and human resources, said: “Oldham Council has a policy of being transparent and open and the salaries of the most senior managers are published on the council website.

“The salary for the position of chief executive of the council is £160,000.

“The holder of this position manages a gross revenue budget of £605 million and is responsible for more than 2,850 members of staff. This does not take into account schools and other companies we have an interest in. This figure is comparable to that of neighbouring local authorities.

“Over the last few years the council has significantly reduced the number of management positions and this has saved the local authority money at a time when budgets are drastically decreasing all the time.”


The above salaries are a disgrace ,I am having problems with the council currently about the state of South Chadderton ,and all I get back from the councillors is due to budget cuts we are unable to meet your requests ,it appears that the rate payers suffer at the expense of the few.

So that covers basic salaries. Now show us the total amount of expenses each person has access to. I almost said 'entitled to' but it shouldn't be.

Such hefty remuneration must stick in the throat of those council employees who can only dream of such jaw-dropping salaries.

Can some expliam why we now have a council and a cabinet why ???

Do other "neighbouring local authorities" to which you compare pay have a general populous with the lowest wages in Greater Manchester and the 23rd lowest in UK which have slipped from 16% below the national average to 20.3% below in the last 3 years? Do these other local authorities have wages suppressed by a tax credits bill that grew by 18% 2012 to 2013 with the average payment to "working families with children" being £9,796 as you continue to fill up & champion over-populating the borough?

Colour it all you wish councillor, the money is that of the public and it seems they are unsatisfied to say the least.

"The holder of this position manages a gross revenue budget of £605 million...."
If these people are responsible, why are their heads not rolling for quality of service?
Why does it feel like avenues of feedback are not effective?

The pay is a disgrace ,why are people being told we are having cut backs ,the only thing that isn't being cut back is obviously pay to the cronies within the council

And you wonder why Saddleworth wants its independence from Oldham? most of the council money comes from up here & goes to these fat jokers.

@andyb - need to do more research. The council has made over £1m savings in senior management salaries, councillors have all taken a 10% cut in their allowances and there is a review of existing vacant management posts to make further savings. Lots of reductions in pay
@Saddleworths Finest - what would you do with independence? I doubt there is enough money to provide all the services you receive. People like you that keep dragging the town backwards because you're stuck in fantasy land

Oldham has population of approx. 103000.
Saddleworth has population of approx. 24000.
most of Oldham's money comes from Saddleworth ?
your sums don't add up SF@

Just another example of how far out of touch our "leaders" are.

Bramble - are you on commission?

How about detailing how much all the councillors receive? Seems like the pigs at the trough are all closing ranks.

@ProDriver - all the information is online, not difficult to find but when your solely focused on accusing people of being over paid and not contributing, I would imagine you wouldn't want to look as it counters your argument. I do not work for the Council and am not a pig at the trough as you so nicked describe people. There really is no need to be so offensive

@Bramble I am not sure which planet you are from ,but how can the council justify those salaries plus the unprinted expenses the said people are claiming .

@AndyB - at no point have I said the salaries can be justified. I don't believe anyone in the public sector should be paid more than the Prime Minister (although I do think that role is probably underpaid). My initial point was in response too your comment that "the only thing that isn't being cut back is obviously pay to the cronies within the council". That's plainly not true as I have demonstrated. Senior management and councillors have made cuts to salaries.


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