Anger over Suffolk leader's salary
SUFFOLK residents have criticised the size of salary offered to Suffolk's new chief executive following news of her official appointment.Andrea Hill, 44, was appointed to the position yesterday on a salary of up to £70,000 more than predecessor Mike More on Thursday following a tight vote among members of Suffolk County Council.
SUFFOLK residents have criticised the size of salary offered to Suffolk's new chief executive following news of her official appointment.
Andrea Hill, 44, was appointed to the position yesterday on a salary of up to £70,000 more than predecessor Mike More on Thursday following a tight vote among members of Suffolk County Council.
Yesterday The Evening Star revealed the selection could now be referred to the district auditor or local government ombudsman due to concerns that rules were broken during the recruitment process.
The decision comes as the Star launches its Suffolk County Council Watch campaign to keep a spotlight on what is happening with the people the county pays to lead it.
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A number of Star readers have been in contact with their views on the issue of Mrs Hills' pay packet, many expressing concern at the size of the salary - up to £220,000 a year.
Liz Ashford, of Ipswich, said: “I think this is disgusting. “What is so special about her that she is paid more than the Prime Minister?
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“You would have thought with all the negative feeling she would have told them that she would take less.
“I notice my council tax has gone up!
“Why? To pay this salary.
Michael Bartlett, of Ipswich, said: “Mr Pembroke, I hope this does cost you your job.”
“I think it's ludicrous and taking the you know what out of the council taxpayer.”
Meanwhile Garry Osborne described the decision as an “absolute disgrace”.
He said: “No wonder my council tax bill has gone up again.”
His view was mirrored by Gillian Chaplin, who said: “This is a disgrace.
“The community charge has gone up and just about everything else has gone up.
“Will she (Mrs Hill) feel at all guilty when she opens her wage packet each month knowing that just about every council tax payer struggled to pay her wage?
“Talk about rubbing salt into a wound.”
Conservative councillors from the council's administration won the vote to appoint Mrs Hill to the Endeavour House hot seat by 37 votes to 31, with one abstention.
During a fierce debate on the issue opposition councillors accused the Tories of breaking the rules by increasing the salary on offer once a short list of candidates had already been drawn up.
Labour politicians are considering referring the matter to the District Auditor or Local Government Ombudsman, however those bodies do not have the power to overturn the decision.
A starting date for Mrs Hill is yet to be set.
Mr More, the current chief executive at Suffolk County Council, is due to officially leave the post on April 6.
n. Should Andrea Hill have been appointed on a salary of up to £220,000? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail email@example.com