The number of Hartlepool Borough Council employees earning more than £100,000 a year is revealed today.
The Taxpayers’ Alliance ‘Town Hall Rich List’ shows the authority had just four employees with a remuneration package in six figures in 2016-17, led by chief executive Gill Alexander, who received a total of £163,401.
A council spokesman said: “It is vital we are able to recruit people with appropriate skills and experience and salaries reflect responsibilities.
“However, the council continues to set the salaries of its most senior staff at levels below those offered by many other local authorities and, indeed, our Chief Executive and Directors remain the lowest paid in the region.
“Given this approach, it is important to note that Hartlepool Borough Council continues to perform well and is one of the few local authorities in the region to have had every service judged externally to be good or better.”
The report shows Durham County Council had 13 employees earning more than £100,000, headed by chief executive Terry Collins, on a total £208,338.
Head of finance and transactional services Paul Darby said: “Our management team was created when the council was formed to replace the eight councils across County Durham in 2009. This move saved £3million in senior management costs.
“The salaries of all senior managers and that of the chief executive were individually assessed by specialist, independent consultants.
“Since 2009 there has been a significant reduction in management and a pay freeze existed up until 2017. The number of corporate directors and heads of service has been reduced and the chief executive’s salary cut by £15,000.”
Taxpayer’s Alliance chief executive John O’Connell said: “There are talented people in the public sector who are trying to deliver more for less, but the sheer scale of these packages raise serious questions about efficiency and priorities. The government must also act to implement the exit payment cap that was passed in 2016.”