Council boss receives £13k payout

Brentwood Council MD Alison Crowe

Brentwood Council MD Alison Crowe - Credit: Archant

Brentwood Council’s managing director received a £13,800 bonus last year – a year after she was appointed in a cost-saving move..

The council’s accounts show that Alison Crowe was awarded the money in 2012/13 – it is about double the payout she received the previous year.

In 2011/12, her basic pay was £97,000, and it increased to £102,000 in 2012/13.

Her package increased after she was effectively promoted last March.

The authority axed the post of chief executive last year in an attempt to save the taxpayer thousands of pounds.

A chief executive job share between Brentwood and Essex County Council was said to have saved £100,000 a year.

At the time Brentwood Council leader, Cllr Louise McKinlay, said that the borough’s management team was strong enough not to need anyone in the role anymore.

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It is said overall staffing costs have been reduced by £1.3million between 2009 and 2013, including £262,000 in senior management costs since 2010.

Cllr McKinlay said the changes to Ms Crowe’s pay reflected her “changing role, which saw her take on more responsibility and effectively receive a promotion to be the most senior officer in the council”. The council has saved an annual £20,000 by no longer sharing a chief executive, it is said.

However, the package has been called “outrageous” by councillors who are calling for senior managers’ pay and bonuses to be debated by full council before they are implemented.

Cllr Mike Le Surf (Labour, Brentwood South) said: “In a climate of recent public sector pay freezes at Brentwood Council, the pay rise and bonus of the managing director is outrageous.”

Cllr William Lloyd, (Brentwood First, Warley) said the payout was “excessive” and added: “Full council should vote as a collective on the remuneration of senior officers, especially at a time when staff are being made redundant and staff morale is low.”

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