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2,295 council staff paid over £100k

More than 2,200 council staff earned over £100,000 last year - as many of them pocketed generous redundancy packages.

Research by the TaxPayers' Alliance found 2,295 were paid six-figure sums in 2009-10, up 18% on the previous year.

The number receiving in excess of £250,000 more than doubled from 19 to 48 over the same period.

Top of the "rich list" was Phil Dolan, whose redundancy package on stepping down as South Somerset chief executive last March totalled £569,000.

He received £157,000 in pay and allowances, another £6,000 in "benefits in kind", £167,000 in compensation for loss of office, and £239,000 in contributions to his pension.

South Somerset Council has insisted Mr Dolan was offered the same deal as junior staff, and sharing a CEO with East Devon District Council was already saving the public purse £96,000 a year.

TaxPayers' Alliance director Matthew Sinclair said people would be "staggered" at the generous remuneration. The pressure group obtained the details of pay from annual reports and using freedom of information requests.

"Households have seen their council tax bills double over the last decade and deserve better value," he said.

Local Government minister Grant Shapps said pay and perks at town halls had gone "through the roof" under Labour.

"The new Government is opening up the pay of middle and senior management to greater scrutiny, and will require any six-figure salaries to be approved - or vetoed - by elected councillors in the full public glare of the council chamber," he said


From Belfast Telegraph