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£675-a-day chief executive at Boston Borough Council to stay for three years

By Boston Target  |  Posted: November 21, 2012

Richard Harbord

Richard Harbord, chief executive of Boston Borough Council

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THE majority of Boston Borough Council's coun- cillors have voted to keep their highly paid chief executive for the next three years.

Richard Harbord is currently paid £121,500 for his 15 day a month contract, the equivalent of £675 per day.

He was appointed in 2009 as a troubleshooter for the council's finances. Twenty one councillors voted in favour of continuing his employment at a full meeting of the council with five against.

Councillors also debated an increase of 20 per cent in their 'special responsibility allowance' over a two year period with 17 in favour and 10 against.

Councillors voting against the increase felt that it came at the 'wrong time', with the council making cutbacks and the economic climate.

Labour councillor Paul Goodale voted against the 20 per cent increase and said: "We are looking to reduce our overheads. If you are going to increase the amount of money for cabinet members then you should think about reducing the amount of cabinet members."

He was supported by Labour councillor Paul Kenny who addressed the council by saying: "Do the people of Boston a favour and rip up the paper. You are not letting yourself down but the people of Boston."

A independent remuneration report stated that councillors in Boston earn far less than elsewhere. The review revealed that the BBC leader currently gets paid £6,487 rising to £8,054 in comparison to the North Kesteven leader who earns £13,158, South Holland leader £19,320 and City of Lincoln leader £9,519 in special responsibility allowances.

Peter Bedford, who voted in favour of the increase, said: "Let's hear some common sense. It's time we got a little bit further on the ladder.

"I think the press should ask the leaders of other councils why they are worth two to three times more than us in Boston."

The increase will see cabinet members receive an extra £652 in special responsibility allowances over a two year period while the deputy leader's allowance will rise by £913.

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  • Bolshie  |  November 21 2012, 3:32PM

    The issue for me here is that I see parity of pay across regions as less important than value for money for the taxpayer. I'm a great fan of performance related pay in the public sector and firmly believe salaries such as these should be linked to results against pre-agreed performance targets - effectively he is then contracting to the council to deliver certain things and if he fails his remuneration reduces accordingly. Payment for output not input should be the mantra when setting executive pay! The question falling from this for me is "Is he worth this salary and are the people of Boston Borough getting the results they want from him"? Not "Are they paying their CEO as much as the other Council CEOs in the county or country"? The councillors effectively own the contract for this guy - awarding a 20% increase at a time public sector pay remains frozen and many in the private sector are having to take cuts in pay to remain in employment really sticks in the craw. I really hope the councillors have demanded a 20% rise in output as a result of his pay rise!! Somehow I think not but will be very happy if any councillor can confirm I'm wrong.

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  • West_Lindsey  |  November 21 2012, 10:19AM

    Once again, they, Councillors/Mp's - ARE ALL IN IT TOGETHER?

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