The Committee received a report from the
Service Director, Human Resources and Workplace, and considered the
public forum statement by Steve Paines, Unite in conjunction with
this item. The report set out recommendations in relation to pay
and conditions and performance management and proposed ideas for
debate around how alternative contractual relationships might look.
The Committee is asked to recommend to Full Council the proposed
Members engaged in a detailed discussion which
explored the contractual elements that could be incorporated into
terms and conditions and performance management in order to limit
the Council’s liability whilst safeguarding the
individual’s employment rights in the event of early
termination of the contract.
In discussion the following points were
- Changes to Chief Executive pay and
conditions should fit within national Joint Negotiating Committee
- A fixed term contract may make it
more difficult for the Council to attract applicants at this
- Other considerations could include a
permanent contract with formalised performance management
arrangements. There were currently no
formal arrangements for performance management in place. The
formalised arrangements proposed in the report are not dissimilar to that
which applies to headteachers in
- Expert advice had been sought in
consideration of appropriate contractual terms around fixed term
contracts. The nature of the term could be fixed to the end of 2020
to overlap with the mayoral and local elections and the transition
to a new mayoral administration term to provide continuity through
that period. Advantages of a fixed term contract could provide the
opportunity to recruit to the skills required at that point.
- A fixed term contract does not rule
out the facility to terminate the contract by mutual agreement. If
a fixed term contract was extended, this would be tantamount to
creation of a permanent contract in law, unless the Council were
able to prove an Objective Justification.
- As one of the “protected
officers”, dismissal of the Head of Paid Service must follow
the procedure set out in the Council’s Constitution, which
involves the Independent Person process.
- The criteria that would trigger a
10% bonus were not clear. In a climate of job and budget cuts
performance bonuses for this post may not seem appropriate. Subject
to proper performance management arrangements, a bonus could
incentivise the postholder to remain.
The trigger of any bonus should be tight criteria and targets and
be assessed by an independent panel.
ALACE and SOLACE are potential sources of advice.
- The 1:10 salary ratio was a
long-term commitment, but there was no plan at this stage to
automatically up-rate the starting salary in line with the Living
Wage Foundation Living Wage. Concern was expressed that this ratio
could limit the Council’s ability to be competitive and
attract the calibre of candidate desired for the role.
- Officers to confirm the fees payable
for the Counting/Returning Officer roles and advise the Committee
of options for alternative distribution arrangements. Action: Richard Billingham
- New government regulations which
stipulate a £95k cap on exit payments would limit the amounts
payable in the event of early termination.
- Of major concern was how to enable
good performance in the role. An option for this could be the
politically-balanced performance management panel as outlined in
the report. Officers to explore performance management options.
Action: Richard Billingham
To agree in principal a fixed term contract for the
Chief Executive post. Officers to provide more detailed proposals
around performance management, contractual terms, returning
officers disbursements and early termination.
To note the report and actions arising.