Council gets the bad news it expected

By Emily Pearce

Friday, December 20, 2013

 

CENTRAL government has announced how much money it will give to the Isle of Wight Council to provide services over the next two financial years — and the news is just as bad as expected.

Amounts allocated to local authorities for 2014/15, and indicative amounts for 2015/16, were announced earlier this week.

Managing director Dave Burbage said: "The government has announced the provisional local government finance settlement for 2014/15 which sets out grant figures for 2014/15 and indicative grants for 2015/16. We are still working through the figures but essentially it is about what we were expecting. In overall terms it confirms that we face a budget gap of some £28 million over the next three financial years."

Cll Jon Gilbey, cabinet member for resources, said: "These are challenging times for this authority and many others across the country, but with some imaginative re-engineering of services and an in-depth look at how we do business we will be able to meet the savings required, we don't really have a choice."

Reporter: emilyp@iwcpmail.co.uk

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Displaying the last 10 of 32 comments - Show All Comments

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by roger mazillius

22nd December 2013, at 17:28:32

David B. Ask that of any CX/MD of a multi-million pound organisation!

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by David Blackford

22nd December 2013, at 15:41:19

Like all of the "snouts in the trough" brigade we hear that they "earn" these vast salaries. - What exactly do they "do/contribute"? - what "expertise" do they have to justify the money they pocket?

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by roger mazillius

22nd December 2013, at 15:21:00

Goodness, chopped off showing 37 characters still left! So the figure at the end was £130k(!)
I will now add that Dave Burbage, having retired as CX at Newham is in a different fiscal position and is prepared to continue working in the top post for less money than say an officer working his way up. As such he has always given fantastic value to IW Council taxpayers and long may he continue to do so!
If you think I am wrong, ask those Councillors now in charge at County Hall if they would rather he left and a new person appointed. I bet there would be no takers.
Contrast that with the appalling character assassination carried on against him two years ago by certain nasty trolls on other sites whose views, in part at least, were accepted by some of the present administration. How reality educates the ignorant!

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by roger mazillius

22nd December 2013, at 15:07:08

David. Sorry you have taken so much offence and I can now see why. You were referring to the Council's CX or Managing Director but you actually posted that it was the Council Leader who was earning that amount. So that was why I made it clear that you were, how shall I put it, badly wrong!
So now you have hopefully realised that the Council Leader is not the top Officer, you will appreciate the extent of your fiscal error.
For my part I am glad to withdraw my "brick short" comment and replace it with eg "some mistake surely"!
I must also thank Jack for his most pertinent and accurate observations.
My recollection of the last CX's salary was that it was £149k plus pension contributions under the LG scheme adding around £35k. Remember that he was responsible as CX for several hundred millions pounds of budget expenditure and such a salary in this day and age fairly in my view reflects such responsibilities.
I expect the new top man is on around £13

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by Jack Woodford

22nd December 2013, at 14:01:19

Fair enough David.
Roger is big and ugly enough to fight his own battles but I think he was making the point the previous leader's salary was nearer to £25k
I remain of the view that the relatively high (in IW terms) salaries of the senior council officials, while an obvious talking point, are largely irrelevant in financial terms given the huge scale of the fiscal challenges ahead.
Like you I do not want to pay any more council tax, particularly when we will be getting less services in return.
It also annoys me that the new administration paints itself as being open and transparent yet are not telling us the nature of cuts nor the scale of redundancies - they must know this late in the budget cycle.

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by david wright

22nd December 2013, at 13:06:00

To finish.

mention cutting fatcat salaries!!!

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by david wright

22nd December 2013, at 13:03:35

@JW
.I dont need a chill pill I am just stating my opinion not ranting or insulting other people because of their opinion on a comments page like Roger did. Your comment re my original £250k being wide of the mark is fair enough but you dont comment on Roger who said £25K!!!! Surely his comment is more absurd than mine?
I think you are being disingenuous saying that overvaluing a council position with an overlarge salary is not important when every council tax payers £1 is important. When the council glibly put up council tax again, with the legal power to enforce you pay it, they do not care if I have to keep my heating off or cut something else from my budget to fund it whilst council employees are living on overblown wages in excess of £100K.
The whole point of my post which has been lost is every time budget misery and cuts are the topic of council announcements they want to close libraries,toilets and stop meals for the elderly but NEVER mention cutting fatc

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by Jack Woodford

22nd December 2013, at 11:43:39

Take a chill pill, David!
Thanks for admitting you exaggerated (greatly, I might add). Now we can talk about the substance of your argument.
So three/four years ago the IW Council CX earned £184k. Is that a lot of money - yes. Is that out of kilter with the norm for local authorities - possibly.
Does it really matter in the grand scheme of things - probably not. The scale of the challenges facing local authorities dwarfs the issue of senior officer remuneration. Its a mere distraction usually peddled by people trying to denigrate the concept of public services
And, to get more fats out there, since 2011/2011 the amount of top earners at IWC has gone down dramatically. With recent departures, I think there is only one director left. That should please you but whether or not there remains the expertise to oversee the forthcoming wholsale cuts and another huge round of redundancies is another matter...

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by david wright

22nd December 2013, at 11:22:34

@JW, My comment was regarding the CEO/£250k not council officers and on closer research after being challenged it seems that was an exaggeration but still the declared £184k received in £2010-11 is a fatcat wage isnt it???
I'm sorry but my link was to a featured Sun story damming IOW council salaries how is that council officers elsewhere?This was also run in the Telegraph The CEO of IOW councils salary and perks have been widely critised . I've put my facts out there from the press and tax payers alliance and you still just say I'm wrong so come on put up your 'facts' to show me I'm wrong as with respect why is your opinion more credible that my linked facts? Do YOU think 'city' wages of this level are value for money on the IOW with our population??

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by Jack Woodford

22nd December 2013, at 08:51:01

David - you were the one that came on here with the absurd accusation that IW Council officers were earning £250k. Surely you should be the one to be offering proof to back that up.
Your link may show officers elsewhere n the country earn that much but that was not your point - you said that was happening on the IW and it isn't. I'm not trying to dig you out or anything, dude, but I think that if people come on here making comments they should get their facts right. And you didn't as your own link even demonstrates.

Any views or opinions presented in the comments above are solely those of the author and do not represent those of the Isle of Wight County Press.

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