Meeting documents

Meeting documents

Chief Officer Pay Panel
Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Chief Officer Pay Panel Minutes

Wednesday, 26th August, 2009
Town Hall, Watford

Attendance Details

Cllr G Derbyshire(Chair), Cllr K Brodhurst, Cllr S Greenslade, Cllr C Leslie, Cllr D Scudder
Managing Director
Democratic Services Manager
Item Description/Resolution
Part A - Open to the Public
CPP01 - 09/10 Apologies for Absence/Change of Membership
There were no apologies for absence.
CPP02 - 09/10 Disclosures of Interest
There were no disclosures of interest.
CPP03 - 09/10 Minutes
The minutes of the Chief Officer Pay Panel meeting held on 5th March 2009 were submitted and signed
CPP04 - 09/10 Exclusion of Press & Public

that, under Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public and press be excluded from the meeting for the following item of business as it was likely, in view of the nature of the business to be transacted or the nature of the proceedings, that if members of the public were present during consideration of the item there would have been disclosure to them of exempt information as defined in Section 100(1), Schedule 12A of the Act for the reasons stated in the report.

Part B - Closed to the Public
CPP05 - 09/10 Chief Officer Pay
The Panel received a report on an independent review of senior officer pay. The Managing Director introduced the report and highlighted four specific issues which he wanted the Panel to consider:

1.Travel Allowance
2.Job evaluation
3.Impact on individuals

Travel Allowance

The report outlined a situation which had arisen relating to the payment of a £1500 travel allowance to senior staff and which had been incorrectly treated as pensionable pay. Problems had arisen and had to be resolved quickly as it affected the retirement pay of some staff. The Managing Director had consulted the LGE pension's expert and it had been determined that most of the allowance had been mis-named as "travel" and had actually been intended to ease recruitment and retention. The advice had been to divide the sum into a £1,200 general employment allowance or Market weighting factor and £300 to cover the travel element. The proposal had been put to affected staff and agreed unanimously. It had been backdated to allow continuity of pension with the staff paying their missed personal contributions. The appropriate tax treatment had also been instituted for the new split arrangement.

In response to a Member question, the Managing Director explained that the £300 was to cover costs related to travel and meant that no travel claim could be lodged if it related to travel within London or Hertfordshire. Payment of a flat sum involved less administration and had been agreed as reasonable by the national body. He said the amount was unlikely to change for some time.

The Panel AGREED that the split was acceptable and endorsed the action taken by the Managing Director. It was emphasised that that the agreed pay-scales for chief officers should always be shown exclusive of the £300 travel allowance to avoid any future misunderstandings about the nature of the allowance.

LGE Job evaluation scheme - Chief Officers

Details of the evaluation process carried out by the LGE were attached to the report. It was noted that the current chief officer pay scales were slightly above the LGE proposed pay scales. However, once the 1 April 2008 national pay award of 2.45% was added, the two scales were pretty well in line. The Managing Director proposed therefore, that the existing chief officer pay scales be retained but that one incremental point be dropped from the Heads' pay scale and three from the Directors' pay scale in order to make all pay scales 4 incremental points in line with the LGE proposed incremental structure.

In response to a comment from the Chair about consistency with Three Rivers DC, the Managing Director explained that these pay scales were not applicable to Shared Services. In response to a question from another Member, he also confirmed that, in terms of comparison with other similar authorities, the current pay scales were about right.

The Panel AGREED to adopt the pay scales and incremental points as specified in column 3 of paragraph 4.12 of the report.

Impact on Individuals

The Managing Director explained an anomaly in respect of the S151 post which had come about because the former post-holder was the Director of Finance.

The Panel AGREED that this post should upgraded to H+ and the postholder moved from H4 to H+1.

The Managing Director went on to talk about two other posts which he wanted the Panel to consider as special cases. The posts in question were the Executive Director (Services) and the Head of Planning. He gave the Panel a detailed explanation of his reasons and asked it to consider accelerated progression of one increment for the holders of both these posts.

The Panel AGREED that both these post-holders should be awarded accelerated progression of one increment.


The Managing Director raised the issue of the relationship between this Panel and the Appointments Committee. The issue was further complicated by the Shared Services Joint Committee which also had responsibility for determining the salaries of some Heads of Service, although there were currently different pay arrangements at Three Rivers DC as the officers appointed under Shared Services were not classed as chief officers. It was suggested that a way forward would be for Tricia Taylor, the Executive Director responsible for Shared Services at Watford to work with David Gardner at Three Rivers and come up with some proposals to bring to this Panel. It was also useful that the Chair of this Panel had recently been appointed as a member of the Shared Services Joint Committee.

The Panel noted the remuneration of the new Managing Director. The Chair stressed the importance of this Panel being able to exercise its authority in terms of decisions relating to the pay-scale when making chief officer appointments. He recognised, however, the need for urgency in this case in agreeing the salary for the appointee which had resulted in neither this panel nor its chairman being consulted.


1.that the action of the Managing Director in relation to the former travel allowance, be endorsed.

2.that the pay scales and incremental points as specified in column 3 of para 4.12 of the report be agreed.

3.that the Executive Director (Services) and Head of Planning each be awarded accelerated progression of one increment to reflect the particular circumstances as outlined by the Managing Director.

4.that the remuneration of the new Managing Director, be noted.

5.that that proposals as discussed by the Panel in respect of maintaining effective liaison with the Appointments Panel in the future be noted.
Published on Thursday, 3rd September, 2009
The meeting started at 5.0pm and finished at 6.0pm


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