Wandsworth Council Bosses Quizzed on Pay

Commons committee looking at remuneration of senior staff

Paul Martin, Chief Executive, and Ravi Govindia, Leader of Wandsworth Council, have both been interviewed by a House of Commons Community and Local Government committee exploring pay for local government sector senior staff.

The Committee, which met on June 4th, consists of eleven backbench MPs and is chaired by Mr Clive Betts MP, Labour Member of Parliament for Sheffield South East. It monitors the policy, administration and spending of the Department for Communities and Local Government. The Committee is an investigative Committee rather than a legislative Committee; it sets its own programme and chooses subjects for inquiries.

The executives were questioned about whether pay package levels are set effectively and if there is adequate transparency and accountability in the way in which councils determine remuneration. The Wandsworth executives are among eight witnesses called on 4th June and more will be interviewed tomorrow (11th June).

In February this year the Evening Standard, through a Freedom of Information request, discovered that Paul Martin was the second highest earning council chief in London, earning £254,880 per annum.

In March, when PutneySW15 asked the council to comment on Mr Martins' salary & the high salaries paid to key staff, a spokesman said:
"The council has reduced senior executive pay by more £800,000 since 2010. We do not recognise the 44 figure mentioned by the Evening Standard. The current figure is 22 and this number will fall even further in the months ahead." (March 27th 2014)

Salaries paid to senior Council staff can be downloaded here 2013. According to the Council's published documents on senior staff salaries, the salary for Mr Martin was frozen at £202,054.29.

June 10, 2014