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New £150,000 Joint Council Chief Executive Set to Be Appointed

Published on: 29 Oct, 2021
Updated on: 1 Nov, 2021

By Emily Coady Stemp

local democracy reporter

The appointment of a joint chief executive for Guildford and Waverley Borough Councils, with a £150,000 salary, is expected to be confirmed next week.

Guildford and Waverley Borough Councils will vote on Monday (November 1) on the appointment of Tom Horwood, the current chief executive at Waverley Borough Council, in a staff-sharing move that aims to save money for the authorities and protect front-line services.

The move will see him take an £18,023 pay rise for taking on a second authority.

Tom Horwood (right – image courtesy Farnham Herald) is expected to be confirmed as the new joint CEO next Monday. GBC’s existing managing director James Whiteman (left) did not apply for the role.

Guildford Borough Council documents state: “Our collaboration programme with Waverley Borough Council will deliver cost savings and protect or enhance front-line services in priority areas.”

The salary for the position of Joint Chief Executive for Waverley Borough Council and Guildford Borough Council is set at £150,000.

In 2020-21 the Guildford managing director’s salary was £135,715, costing the council a total of £168,255 after including costs such as pensions and expenses, according to the borough council’s draft statement of accounts.

At Waverley Mr Horwood, who started working at the council in 2017, is earning £131,977 and costing the council £154,859 with pensions contributions added in, according to the council’s annual reports.

Mr Horwood will earn only £10,000 less than Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who currently receives a salary of £161,401 per year.

Contract terms and conditions have been agreed by both full councils, but the new joint chief executive will remain an employee of Waverley Borough Council.

A leaving date for James Whiteman, the current Guildford managing director, is yet to be confirmed but he is expected to stay until December to complete a handover. Mr Horwood will then be subject to a four-week trial period.

The Dragon has been told that Mr Whiteman did not apply for the new position and that his redundancy payment will be substantially over £100,000, with additional payments to cover pension liabilities.

On July 6 this year, Guildford council agreed to look at the options for collaborating with Waverley Borough Council and after a two-day process, including an external stakeholder panel, and advice from South East Employers, Mr Harwood was selected for the job. He cannot receive a formal job offer until both councils have voted to approve it.

Minutes of a Guildford Borough Council joint executive advisory board meeting in June said: “There was an urgent requirement to identify any and all potential savings that could assist with bridging the budget gap over the next few years.

“Savings delivered to date included a reduction in staffing costs of £4.3 million through the Future Guildford programme.”

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Responses to New £150,000 Joint Council Chief Executive Set to Be Appointed

  1. Jim Allen Reply

    October 30, 2021 at 2:58 pm

    I could ‘get by’ on £100,000+ for a few of years.

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