Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Council Chiefs Spared Pay Cuts despite Mayor's Vow ; Lower-Paid Workers Lose Up to Pounds 2,000 a Year but Town Hall Is First to Introduce Living Wage

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Council Chiefs Spared Pay Cuts despite Mayor's Vow ; Lower-Paid Workers Lose Up to Pounds 2,000 a Year but Town Hall Is First to Introduce Living Wage

Article excerpt

HUNDREDS of town hall staff face wage cuts of up to Pounds 2,000 a year in a sweeping pay shake-up - but none of the top bosses will lose any pay, it has been revealed.

Salford council has re-evaluated the jobs of all its staff in a bid to save Pounds 15m.

Some 629 workers on Pounds 21,000 to Pounds 42,000 face cuts of between Pounds 300 and Pounds 2,000 a year.

But none of the authority's 30 highest-paid officers - including Pounds 211,000-a-year chief executive Barbara Spicer - will lose any pay.

Trade union chiefs said the move was unjust - saying senior managers should be shouldering more of the burden.

Details of the shake-up emerged just months after Salford mayor Ian Stewart wrote in the M.E.N: "I have given a castiron guarantee that I will do everything in my power to protect the lowest-paid staff. The highest-paid, including the chief executive, will have to take their fair share of any cuts."

Those top staff members will instead have their pay frozen. Mr Stewart said this was effectively a pay cut.

Council bosses stressed that the majority of workers would see their wages unchanged or increased.

More than 1,000 minimumwage staff will see their hourly rate rise to Pounds 7.45 an hour as Salford becomes the first council in Greater Manchester to introduce the living wage.

The council has been forced to overhaul wages due to equal pay laws designed to increase the salaries of low-paid female staff. After months of negotiation, they believe they have a fair plan.

Most staff - 2,984, or 51 per cent - see no change to their pay.

More than a third - 2,215 - will gain up to Pounds 1,700 a year.

But 629 staff on Pounds 21,000-Pounds 42,000 will lose out, with more than 300 seeing more than Pounds 1,000 slashed from their pay.

And the council's 30 top earners will not see their wages cut - although they will face a three-year pay freeze, saving Pounds 700,000. …

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