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The council bosses in Suffolk and Cambridge who earn more than the Prime Minister



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It has been revealed that several chief executives in Suffolk and Cambridgeshire councils earned more than Prime Minister Boris Johnson last year - with one raking in just over £200,000.

John Hill, who serves as chief executive on East Cambridgeshire District Council, is named in the TaxPayers' Alliance's Town Hall Rich List as the 138th highest-earning local government official in the UK, coming in with an overall income of £210,061.

The list, issued annually, discloses the incomes of top-earning local government employees.

Nicola Beach, Suffolk County Council's chief executive
Nicola Beach, Suffolk County Council's chief executive

The figures factor in salaries, expenses claims and pension contributions, which are all publicly declared.

Chief executives at all the Suffolk councils profiled in the rich list had incomes of over £100,000.

Suffolk County Council's chief executive, Nicola Beach, earned £225,193 in total, while her counterpart at East Suffolk Council, Stephen Baker, made £206,807.

Ian Gallin, West Suffolk Council's chief executive
Ian Gallin, West Suffolk Council's chief executive

Ten officials at East Suffolk Council took home over £100,000, with twelve staff members at Suffolk County Council also fitting into this category.

Meanwhile, the average B and D householder in East Suffolk is paying 5.8 per cent more in council tax than they were in 2019.

The Prime Minister is entitled to an annual salary of £161,401.

This means that chief executives at all Suffolk councils earn more than Boris Johnson in his role as PM.

The only exception is Ipswich Town Council's chief executive, who's income is listed as £129,350.

West Suffolk Council's chief executive, Ian Gallin, has a listed income of £193,333.

A resident living in a Band D property in West Suffolk will be paying 5.5 per cent more in council tax than they were three years ago.

The TaxPayers' Alliance, which draws up the Town Hall Rich List, is a pressure group campaigning for lower taxes in Britain.

According to polling by the Alliance, 59 per cent of UK residents wish to see the salaries of senior council staff frozen or cut.

The Alliance's chief executive, John O'Connell, said: "Taxpayers facing huge and hated council tax rises want to know they are getting value for money from their local authority leadership.

"At the onset of the coronavirus crisis, thousands of town hall officials were taking home huge sums.

"While councils were plunged into tackling the pandemic, many staff will have more than earned their keep, but households have nevertheless struggled with enormous and unpopular council tax rises.

"These figures shine a light on the town hall bosses who’ve got it right, and will enable residents to hold those who aren’t delivering value for money to account."

East Cambridgeshire Council declined to comment on Mr Hill's income, but noted that, excluding parish precepts, council tax rates had not increased in its area for almost a decade.

A spokesperson for Suffolk County Council said: "The cost of employing senior staff at Suffolk County Council has decreased significantly in the last 10 years, despite being an organisation that employs more than 5,000 people delivering a range of complex and important services 365 days a year.

"Overseeing this delivery requires highly-qualified and experienced people capable of providing vision and leadership. To get the best people we need to pay competitive yet realistic salaries, something we believe we offer and which offer the best return for the taxpayer."

A spokesperson for East Suffolk Council stated: "East Suffolk Council is one of the largest district authorities in the country, delivering crucial services to a quarter of a million people, addressing huge challenges and supporting the delivery of multi-million-pound infrastructure projects that will benefit local communities for generations.

"As with any business of this size, recruiting highly-qualified professionals with the right experience is critically important.

"However, we are committed to efficiency; as indicated by the joint working between Suffolk Coastal and Waveney - which led to a full merger three years ago and provided the opportunity to reduce the number of senior managers, bringing savings to the local taxpayer.

"Our salaries are competitive but are benchmarked against councils with similar population and geographical demographics and any changes to pay are adjudicated independently. This year senior managers received a lower percentage increase than the wider workforce."

A spokesperson for West Suffolk Council said: "The council regularly keeps its pay under review and any change to senior pay grades is always carried out independently and with reference to regional benchmarks.

"The annual cost of living rise, as considered and awarded nationally each year, is applied at the same rate across all pay scales across the organisation. Our pay policy and our pay ratios are published annually on our website.

"West Suffolk Council is proud to report that there is no gender pay gap and that our pay ratios between the highest and lowest paid are well within national guidance as established by the Hutton Review on Fair Pay."