Under Section 39 of the Localism Act 2011, the Council was required to consider and approve a pay policy statement for the financial year ahead and publish it on its website. The Council therefore considered the Pay Policy Statement covering 2020-21, which had set out the elements of pay and other benefits paid to staff and in particular the most senior employees.
The pay award was made in Julyeach year and the Council was currently consulting with Unison on this award. Following the redesign of the organisational structure in Phase A of the Future Guildford transformation programme, a new Head of Service salary band for the most senior management level below Directors had been introduced to provide support to the Directors to reflect the reduction in the number of director posts.
Councillors noted that the Council would continue to pay at the Real Living Wage for outside London, which was currently £9.30 per hour, at the bottom of the pay scale. This would aid recruitment difficulties in attracting and retaining key staff.
Councillors also noted that the restructure of the Corporate Management Team had been completed as part of Phase A of Future Guildford and that the recruitment process for the appointment of a new Director of Service Delivery had commenced. As the remuneration package that the Council was offering in respect of this appointment would exceed £100,000, the Council was invited to approve it in accordance with paragraph 12.4 of the Pay Policy Statement for 2020-21. The elements of the remuneration package for the role of Director of Service Delivery were set out in a table on the Order Paper circulated at the meeting.
The Lead Councillor for Finance and Assets, Customer Service, Councillor Joss Bigmore proposed, and the Leader of the Council, Councillor Caroline Reeves, seconded the motion to adopt the Pay Policy Statement for 2020-21, approve the proposed remuneration package associated with the appointment of a Director of Service Delivery and authorise the Employment Committee to make an appropriate offer to the successful candidate.
During the debate and following a question as to why the Council was still providing lease cars to certain staff, bearing in mind the Council’s zero carbon emissions aspiration, the Leader of the Council explained that an offer of a car was essential in order to attract the best candidates. However, it was noted that the Council was moving towards a fully electric lease car fleet.
It was also suggested that the Council should consider increasing the pay to its lowest paid staff at a rate higher than the real living wage to reflect the high cost of living in Guildford, and ensuring that the Council’s contractors pay the real living wage to their employees. The Leader indicated that the Council was very mindful of these matters
Having considered the motion, the Council
(1) That the Pay Policy Statement for the 2020-21 financial year, attached at Appendix 1 to the report submitted to the Council, be approved.
(2) That the proposed remuneration package associated with the appointment of a Director of Service Delivery at a sum exceeding £100,000, as set out in the table on the Order Paper, be approved.
(3) That the Employment Committee be authorised to make the appropriate offer to the successful candidate for appointment as Director of Service Delivery.
To comply with the Localism Act 2011 (Section 39).