A FORMER county council employee is to be paid £750-a-day to act as a contracted consultant.
The contract is for two days a week for six months — meaning the consultant will earn around £6,000 a month and about £36,000 for the entire period.
Their job will be to advise on the ‘Joint Property Vehicle’ (JPV) part of a new public sector company called Place Partnership formed by Redditch Borough Council, Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue Service, Warwickshire Police, West Mercia Police, Worcester City Council and Worcestershire County Council.
However, county councillor Peter McDonald (Lab, Bromsgrove) described the appointment as an insult to residents to being pay such a day rate for someone to come in especially when the JPV already had a manager on a six figure salary. But the county council’s chief executive Clare Marchant said the Place Partnership scheme had been designed to make savings of approximately £75million by 2025 by establishing smarter and more commercial ways of managing public sector property on behalf of taxpayers.
“We’re now entering a critical period in creating this new company and ensuring we have people with the right specialist skills to manage that set up is crucial to its success,” she said.
“It’s important to note the programme director is a temporary appointment who will cease to work on Place Partnership once the managing director has taken over.”
She said funding for the post was shared across a number of different bodies, including the six partner organisations which created the Place Partnership with contributions from the Department for Communities and Local Government, Local Government Authority, the West Midlands Regional Improvement and Efficiency Partnership and others.
Ms Marchant said the consultant was currently being paid £1,500 a week with more than 60 per cent of that being paid for by government and regional grants.
Coun McDonald labelled the move ‘scandalous’ and said: “This is more than most people can earn in two weeks let alone a day.
“Residents need monies to be spent on improving services, not throwing sheds of monies on an unwanted consultant.”