Wandsworth chief executive takes home £200k as council tries to save £100m

Wandsworth Guardian: Laughing all the way to the bank: Paul Martin Laughing all the way to the bank: Paul Martin

The head of cash-strapped Wandsworth Council pocketed more than £200,000 of taxpayers' money, making him the highest paid permanent chief executive in London.

The new figures, provided by think-tank Taxpayer's Alliance, reveal that Paul Martin trousered £203,136 in the 2011-12 financial year.

Only two council bosses in London earned more than Mr Martin but both are either leaving their post or have left already.

Derek Myers, who presides over Hammersmith & Fulham and Kensington & Chelsea councils, announced his retirement last month and both local authorities have said his replacement will earn much less than his outgoing salary of £266,911.

While Gareth Daniel, who took home £205,783, quit his post as Brent Council chief executive earlier this year.

The Taxpayer's Alliance compile their Rich List each year and reveal not just the top council earners but also the local authorities with the highest number of employees earning more than £100,000 per year.

This year Wandsworth came third in this respect with 33 employees earning more than the threshold - only Camden (with 40 employees) and Essex (with 36) had more people taking home more than £100,000.

This means that 33 employees shared a minimum of £3.3m between them.

The only other council employee who was in the top 20 earners in the UK was Wandsworth's director of finance Chris Buss who raked in £180,236.

A spokesman for the council said: "The council has reduced senior executive pay by more than £800,000 since 2010 and that process is continuing.

"Wandsworth is one of the best-run and most efficient councils in the country while charging residents the nation's lowest average council tax bills.

"Since council tax was first introduced the average Wandsworth resident has paid £8,600 less in council tax than the average Londoner.

"Compared to our neighbours, Wandsworth Band D payers are £10,054 better off over that period than taxpayers in Merton, £11,741 better off than Kingston taxpayers and £12,108 better off than Richmond’s.

The council are attempting to slash more than £100m off their budget by 2015.

Comments (1)

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8:24pm Thu 23 May 13

Sean Ferrer says...

I take exception to this shallow and contemptuous style of reporting.

Paul Martin, the chief executive of Wandsworth Council's annual remuneration is almost half that of his predecessor, Gerald Jones (whose remuneration was reported by the Wandsworth Guardian as in the region of £360k prior to his departure).

Let’s keep this simple: Paul runs a multi-million pound business, along with some 3,000 colleagues, which serves over 300,000 residents, whilst charging the lowest council tax in the country.

I am just one of those colleagues, working hard with our chief executive and the rest of my brilliant colleagues to continue to deliver excellent services at the best possible value, whilst facing the Herculean task of achieving savings of £100 million.

For the record, my job is to recruit foster carers to look after our children in care and to help our adoption social workers to find loving families for children who are waiting. In return for that work, I 'trouser' £40k of taxpayer's money a year.

By any measure, a chief executive in charge of such a huge business, who takes home just five times more than me in a year, is providing undisputedly excellent value for money.

Balanced reporting? I think not.
I take exception to this shallow and contemptuous style of reporting. Paul Martin, the chief executive of Wandsworth Council's annual remuneration is almost half that of his predecessor, Gerald Jones (whose remuneration was reported by the Wandsworth Guardian as in the region of £360k prior to his departure). Let’s keep this simple: Paul runs a multi-million pound business, along with some 3,000 colleagues, which serves over 300,000 residents, whilst charging the lowest council tax in the country. I am just one of those colleagues, working hard with our chief executive and the rest of my brilliant colleagues to continue to deliver excellent services at the best possible value, whilst facing the Herculean task of achieving savings of £100 million. For the record, my job is to recruit foster carers to look after our children in care and to help our adoption social workers to find loving families for children who are waiting. In return for that work, I 'trouser' £40k of taxpayer's money a year. By any measure, a chief executive in charge of such a huge business, who takes home just five times more than me in a year, is providing undisputedly excellent value for money. Balanced reporting? I think not. Sean Ferrer
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