Sinn Féin voice Opposition to Council Director’s Pay Hike

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Monday, June 11th, 2012
The Sinn Féin Newry & Mourne District Council team have recorded their strenuous opposition to legislation which allows for six senior council staff to claim pay rises backdated over the last 6 years. The issue was discussed at the June meeting of Newry Council where Sinn Féin group leader Jimmy McCreesh said, “Like many local taxpayers and ratepayers I am appalled at revelations that six senior officials working with Newry and Mourne Council, all of who presently earn more than £70,000 per year, are to get pay rises of 5.8% backdated for 6 years. In total this will cost the ratepayer hundreds of thousands of pounds. This money would be much better spent on community schemes or being put into the long awaited swimming pool project.” He continued, “Sinn Féin believe that it is wrong that high earning managers are enjoying these hefty pay rises while in the wider economy many people are accepting pay cuts or being made redundant and youth emigration is rising across the district. Council officials on one hand preach about the need to cut and trim Council services, but on the other hand use the system to award themselves with many thousands of pounds from much needed funds. So much for serving the public.” “I also believe that this back pay is obscene, not only because of the amount of money involved, but also because all of this is perfectly legitimate legally as it was part of the Council’s Single Status Agreement. I call on Stormont Minister Alex Atwood, whose Department has permitted this plundering of much needed Council funds, to immediately introduce legislation to stop this abuse,” McCreesh added.
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