Local residents and opposition councillors have reacted with amazement at the revelation that Worthing Borough Council is advertising six job posts with salaries between £70,000 and £84,000 a year. With pension contributions added in, the cost of these posts to local taxpayers in Worthing will be in excess of £320,000 a year.
Over the past twelve months the Labour councillors who run Worthing Borough Council have overseen a budget overspend of £4 million on services and salaries, warned of a budget gap of over £6 million pound over the next five years and hiked council tax, car parking charges, green waste collection fees and beach hut rents. Now residents learn that the extra money being raked in is being spent on a raft of new senior job positions rather than on improving local services. On top of all this excess, there is no mention of just how much it is costing to use a recruitment consultancy to do this work.
Conservative councillor Kevin Jenkins, leader of the Conservative group says, “Council taxpayers in Worthing will be quite rightly angered by more evidence of financial mismanagement by the Labour councillors running our council. The council already has a workforce of hundreds of staff including a Chief Executive, three directors and more assistant directors. It beggars belief that this work can’t be covered without employing six new, very well paid officers. At a time when the council is hiking tax and cutting jobs in departments like street cleaning, the Conservative group on Worthing Borough Council will be calling for a recruitment freeze on all senior managerial posts.”
Since coming to power in May 2022 Worthing Labour have increased council tax by twice the average rises set by the Conservatives between 2011 and 2022, put up town centre parking charges by 30%, cut £80,000 of funding from the local policing budget, cut £500,000 of funding for services like schools and highway repairs and awarded themselves inflation busting pay rises.