Thursday, 18 February 2010

Labour to hide council snouts

A recent post here ( Big snouts and deep troughs for London council bosses ) drew attention to the 498 council bosses in London now earning over £100,000, a scandal that has seen the earnings of public sector bosses under Labour soar above all other earnings. Now in an effort to limit damage from increasing disclosures about top salaries, Labour has grudgingly required all local councils to disclose details of staff ..... but only those earning above £150,000. This follows a determined fight-back by the snouts themselves against being identified; as a Telegraph leader has it today
Material disclosed through Freedom of Information requests reveals the full, self-serving nature of council executives' objections to greater transparency. Publishing such details, they warned, would lead to officials being "personally targeted by less stable persons in the community", "could lead to personal attacks" and "families could be at risk of abuse and children of bullying".In other words, if council taxpayers really knew how their money was being spent, they would be tempted to resort to violence. What an admission. Such bluster would be comical if it had not proved so effective – for the Government has caved in.
As the Telegraph says;
The MPs' expenses scandal has changed fundamentally the way we view public servants and how they spend our money. Any remaining notion of a public-service ethos has been replaced by scepticism and suspicion – unfortunate, perhaps, but understandable in the light of the cynical abuses this newspaper uncovered.
Hiding the snouts won't work. We need disclosure.


Brian, follower of Deornoth said...

What, exactly, are they thinking?

Given the general esteem council cancers are held in among the taxpaying public, everyone will assume the worst and act accordingly.

I'm told that HMRC officials are somewhat loath to disclose their profession in social circumstances because of the consequences; this decision will add council officials to the list of the justly despised.

Scrobs... said...

"this decision will add council officials to the list of the justly despised."

Don't think there's a sproblem there, we despise them already - absolute wasters, and inept, and downright thick too.

Look at the list of council players in Tunbridge Wells, and you'll understand. They really are the most stupid people ever to draw breath!

English Pensioner said...

All companies have to declare, in their annual report, the salaries of the Directors and Chief Executive and also give a statement of the number of employees in each of several salary bands.
The same rule should apply in Local Government, Government Agencies, Quangos and the Civil Service, all of whom should be forced to publish this information annually.
Of course, all those who have been shouting about revealing bank salaries, etc, don't want the same rules applied to themselves.

Letters From A Tory said...

The bullying excuse was the funniest - suggesting that they cannot publish bloated public sector salaries because Little Johnny at the local primary school might come unstuck when debating the merits of reducing debt and ending Quantitative Easing with his 6-year-old classmates is just priceless.