Just 384 vote, but two-thirds of Harrow Borough Council staff vote to bring back Harrow Borough Council chief executive

Two-thirds in favour of bringing back council chief executive

Two-thirds in favour of bringing back council chief executive

First published in News
Last updated
This Is Local London: Photograph of the Author by , Senior Reporter

Results of a consultation on reinstating Harrow Borough Council's chief executive role have come back in favour of the change.

Last month the council's Labour administration launched the survey of 5,000 people including council staff, councillors, union members and local authority school staff on the proposals.

Just 384 responded, but two thirds were in favour or reappointing a chief executive.

Harrow Council’s cabinet will now consider the results of the consultation before putting a recommendation forward at September’s cabinet meeting.

In November last year, the Conservative administration scrapped the position to reduce costs, resulting in the then chief executive Michael Lockwood leaving his job with a payoff of £168,000.

Leader of the council Councillor David Perry said: “I have always maintained that the deletion of the CEO post was done with the minimum consultation possible.

“Staff were not allowed any say - we have put that right by actually asking our employees and elected representatives what they think.

“This consultation is about having the right kind of management structure to oversee the huge challenges facing Harrow Council, particularly the need to slash £75 million from our budget due to Government cuts.

“Over the coming few weeks we will consider the best route forward before putting a recommendation to next month’s cabinet meeting.”

In the feedback of the consultation, one respondent said: “Just as we have a leader of the council who represents the community, we need a chief executive who would represent the organisation."

Before it was scrapped, the chief executive position had an annual salary of £183,097, and Conservative group said removing the role would save the council up to £1.2million over four years.

Last month the Harrow Times gave the leaders of the two main political parties at the council to have their say on the role of chief executive.

Conservative leader Susan Hall’s comments can be read here and Leader for the council David Perry’s view can be read here.

And earlier this month the Harrow Times ran and online poll of reader’s on the issue with 66 per cent of respondents against the role coming back to the council while 27 per cent in favour of the idea.

Comments (6)

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2:25pm Tue 19 Aug 14

Yogesh says...

Incredible deal, 256 out of the potential 5,000 council employees (about 5%) said yes to the position of Chief Exec. Would it be possible to see the responses? I presume not.

What happened to the 95%? Should these be taken as against the position? Nope, that will not happen. Bad luck to those who did not vote or were not present during the consultation period.

Will Cllr. Perry and the Cabinet take into consideration 66% of the Harrow residents who do not want the position. Nope that will not happen either.

However, if you take the 27% of the Harrow residents and 5% of the council staff could potentially add up to 33% who want the position reinstated. Cllr. Perry have worked out the justification for you and the Cabinet.

You do not have to worry about the potential 95 + 66 = 161% who are against the position. They are only your voters, you do not need to worry about them for another 4 years.

Wonder what this tells about the capability of the current administration? Unable to make serious decision without a Chief Exec. May be the position is required as the 'fall guy' so that if something goes wrong it will not be Administration's fault. Can always blame the Chief Exec.

May be the Administration already knows what aspects are going to cause major issues and can be blamed on the new Chief Exec. Now that is value for money!!
Incredible deal, 256 out of the potential 5,000 council employees (about 5%) said yes to the position of Chief Exec. Would it be possible to see the responses? I presume not. What happened to the 95%? Should these be taken as against the position? Nope, that will not happen. Bad luck to those who did not vote or were not present during the consultation period. Will Cllr. Perry and the Cabinet take into consideration 66% of the Harrow residents who do not want the position. Nope that will not happen either. However, if you take the 27% of the Harrow residents and 5% of the council staff could potentially add up to 33% who want the position reinstated. Cllr. Perry have worked out the justification for you and the Cabinet. You do not have to worry about the potential 95 + 66 = 161% who are against the position. They are only your voters, you do not need to worry about them for another 4 years. Wonder what this tells about the capability of the current administration? Unable to make serious decision without a Chief Exec. May be the position is required as the 'fall guy' so that if something goes wrong it will not be Administration's fault. Can always blame the Chief Exec. May be the Administration already knows what aspects are going to cause major issues and can be blamed on the new Chief Exec. Now that is value for money!! Yogesh
  • Score: 6

4:15pm Tue 19 Aug 14

M Harrow says...

I would invite those people who feel it is necessary for such a position to please pay this out of your own salaries. I am a pensioner with a limited income and unable to go 'on strike' for any increase in the cost of living or affect on my pension.
Considering there is limited resource available within the Council budget why are we spending money on a chief executive and paying for council members? Maybe as a cost saving the elected members should not be able to claim fees to attend meetings for which they will not represent the majority of voters who do not see this role as necessary.
I would invite those people who feel it is necessary for such a position to please pay this out of your own salaries. I am a pensioner with a limited income and unable to go 'on strike' for any increase in the cost of living or affect on my pension. Considering there is limited resource available within the Council budget why are we spending money on a chief executive and paying for council members? Maybe as a cost saving the elected members should not be able to claim fees to attend meetings for which they will not represent the majority of voters who do not see this role as necessary. M Harrow
  • Score: 7

7:50pm Tue 19 Aug 14

diligaf says...

Have all of Harrow council employees lost there minds!!!!
Have all of Harrow council employees lost there minds!!!! diligaf
  • Score: 7

11:24pm Tue 19 Aug 14

JC757568 says...

Again a further illustration of how cllr perry is unable to recognise that he and his fellow councillors are here to serve the residents of the London Borough of Harrow. Watch the job columns of the Harrow Times, the new Chief Executive will be hiring for a PA, secretary, PR assistant etc. Looks like street cleaning and bin collection budgets will be cut again to pay for it.
Again a further illustration of how cllr perry is unable to recognise that he and his fellow councillors are here to serve the residents of the London Borough of Harrow. Watch the job columns of the Harrow Times, the new Chief Executive will be hiring for a PA, secretary, PR assistant etc. Looks like street cleaning and bin collection budgets will be cut again to pay for it. JC757568
  • Score: 7

5:18pm Thu 21 Aug 14

jackdaw says...

I agree with all the previous comments. You have all explained it perfectly . It is called spending other people's money e.g. council tax.

I think Cllr Perry considers himself part of the patrician class whilst the voters belong to the plebeian class and can safely be ignored. Guess he does not want to hear from the revolting peasants who are Harrow's electorate.

As far as the cleaning goes the next suggestion will be to sweep the rubbish into the pot holes.
I agree with all the previous comments. You have all explained it perfectly . It is called spending other people's money e.g. council tax. I think Cllr Perry considers himself part of the patrician class whilst the voters belong to the plebeian class and can safely be ignored. Guess he does not want to hear from the revolting peasants who are Harrow's electorate. As far as the cleaning goes the next suggestion will be to sweep the rubbish into the pot holes. jackdaw
  • Score: 7

8:14am Fri 22 Aug 14

Anthony Harrow says...

Of Course they Support it The Managers will have less responsibility but still get paid the same.
If The Roll of Chief Exec is reinstated then those manager should receive less pay accordingly as their responsibilities will then be less
Of Course they Support it The Managers will have less responsibility but still get paid the same. If The Roll of Chief Exec is reinstated then those manager should receive less pay accordingly as their responsibilities will then be less Anthony Harrow
  • Score: 7

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