Dr Crippen is a bit (belatedly) upset that the Taxpayers Alliance have criticised the Chief Executive of Kent County Council’s £229,999 salary.
It turns out that Peter Gilroy is a former nurse which, it would appear, perfectly justifies a taxpayer-funded salary that most of us mere mortals can only dream of. Kent County Council have increased their Council Tax by 3.9% this year and that’s before parish, police, fire and NHS precepts have been added on.
The Queen has cancelled her diamond wedding anniversary party this year because she thought that such extravagance was insensitive in light of the financial difficulties of the population, it’s a shame local authority Chief Exec’s don’t have the same sense of empathy with the people who pay their wages.
I don’t understand how anyone can justify paying the Chief Executive of a local authority more than the Prime Minister, even if said Prime Minister is a vacuous little shit and a part time MP. I can’t speak for residents of Kent but I know that the current and previous Chief Executives of Telford & Wrekin have been contemptable Liebour stooges who treated residents like inconvenient piggy banks and elected councillors like obstructions to the advance of their empire. The previous incumbent at Telford & Wrekin, Micheal “The Traitor” Frater, rubbed everyone up the wrong way in Telford, was almost universally despised in the borough and then trotted off to Nottingham where he’s been given the order of the boot after less than two years because he did exactly the same there. He’s one of the highest paid Chief Executives in the country and he’s shit.
Regardless of the history of a Chief Executive – whether they were a successful businessman, the Pope’s foot rubber or a bloody dustman – the taxpayer should not be expected to pay the kind of salary you’d expect to see the Chief Executive of a large corporation to be earning.
I think perhaps the problem is that local councils are increasingly being run as a business rather than a service. They don’t have residents any more, they have “customers”. They rarely provide services themselves, they contract them out to private (often foreign-owned) companies. Telford & Wrekin actually set up their own private company using taxpayers money to contract their own work out to themselves and then sold it to a Spanish company! Then there are the “regeneration partnerships” set up with unelected regional quangos and “the business community”.
Local government is a public service, supposedly an instrument of democratic government; it is not the private sector and those working in local government should be doing it because they’re interested in public service, not three figure salaries.