Council chief to take a pay cut?

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HIGH Peak Borough Council’s chief executive and three of his senior managers have reportedly volunteered to take a pay cut as the authority looks to cut jobs and save money.

Pay cuts for chief executive Simon Baker and three directors, who make up the joint senior management team of the High Peak and Staffordshire Moorlands District councils’ alliance, are on the table when the authorities meet to set their budgets for the next 12 months.

A spokesperson for High Peak Council said: “Potential voluntary pay cuts for the chief executive and directors are one of the many proposals to be put before council shortly to help cut spending by £3.5 million over three years, to help protect front line services and to keep council tax low.

“The proposed voluntary reductions in pay apply to the chief executive and directors across their entire salary for work done for both authorities, the details of which are subject to due process of scrutiny, cabinet and council.”

Final figures are yet to be released, but rumours suggest the cut in Mr Baker’s pay could be in the region of 7.5 per cent. A freeze on performance-related pay is also set to be considered.

The move has been welcomed by The TaxPayers’ Alliance, an independent, grassroots campaign group for lower taxes.

Campaign Director Emma Boon said: “Taxpayers will be pleased to see that Simon Baker is offering to take a pay cut.

“With pressures on council finances this shows that he is willing to do his bit to help find big savings in the coming years.

“Let’s hope that other council chief executives and the highest paid ten per cent of town hall staff will follow his example and volunteer to take a cut to their pay and perks too.”

High Peak is proposing to reduce its budget by £3.5 million over the next three years, a move which will see 30 management posts axed between both alliance authorities.