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Controversial council boss could receive a £320,000 pay-off

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Back to work: Bryn Parry Jones

Back to work: Bryn Parry Jones

ON THURSDAY afternoon (Oct 16), Pembrokeshire’s County Councillors will meet in what is likely to be a private session to discuss the terms of a settlement between the Council and its most senior employee, Chief Executive Bryn Parry-Jones.

The Pembrokeshire Herald understands that the sum likely to be on the table is in excess of £320,000.

While all councillors spoken to by this newspaper are staying tight-lipped about the potential terms of any settlement, a County Hall insider has told us the key components of any settlement.

After speaking with a public sector employment specialist, The Herald has established that in most Welsh local government contracts for senior staff, guidance  for calculating settlements indicates a gross payment of between three months’ to two years’ salary, based on seniority and overall length of service.

Bryn Parry-Jones would be at the upper end of the settlement framework.

Starting from that point (and stripping away other payments) Bryn Parry-Jones’ base salary is around £173,000.

In a settlement agreement it would also be usual to incorporate a provision for payment in lieu of notice. While this might vary depending on circumstances, the amount in lieu of notice would usually be around three months’ pay.

In local government contracts there is a provision for a payment in respect of other guaranteed payments additional to the base salary and these are often incorporated into the settlement agreement sum.

The Council would be obliged to deduct tax from the any part of the payment exceeding £30,000.

One potential sticking point is how the Council deals with Mr Parry-Jones’ pension. As things stand he would need the Council’s permission to draw any benefit from the scheme, as he opted out of it two years’ ago when the Council approved the unlawful payments scheme which has ultimately led to the current fracture between the parties. Mr Parry-Jones has previously told Councillors that he regards that issue to be far from closed. The Council ceased paying Mr Parry-Jones’ pension contributions (the unlawful pay supplement) around the time of the Extraordinary Meeting which discussed it on February 14, this year.

The overall position turns on how both sides view their risk exposure. An employer, particularly a County Council, will always need to bear in mind political as well as litigation pressure.

The prospect of a significant monetary settlement will weigh heavily upon councillors, who will bear in mind the likely outraged reaction of their constituents if Mr Parry-Jones walks away with what potentially equates to a 1% increase in Council Tax for every household in Pembrokeshire.

The prospect of further protests tomorrow about the settlement, as the Council tries to push through £50m in cuts, cannot be discounted.

The pay-off is due to be debated after 2pm.

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9 Comments

9 Comments

  1. Flashbang

    October 15, 2014 at 4:46 pm

    The damage that BPJ has done to the county over the years far outweighs any payment he gets. Let’s not forget his mismanagement of pretty much everything he’s had a hand in, his abuse of position and the personal slander on Councillor Mike Stoddart. He should have been sacked long ago were it not for the cosy arrangement he has with Jamie Adams which should be put under the microscope. The whole thing stinks to high heaven and beyond.

  2. Bob

    October 15, 2014 at 5:24 pm

    Someone please tell me this is a joke? I pray that councillors will see sense and NOT agree to any pay off, let the investigation take its’ course and then dismiss BJP for misconduct without compensation.

  3. Tomos

    October 15, 2014 at 7:14 pm

    Were all those “leaks” about 1.8 mill or 2 million even just spin to soften the blow so we think £300k is cheap?

    If I’d known it was this cheap I’d have sacked the ****** years ago

    PS Why pay him off honestly? Anyone who had done ONE of the many actions/decisions he’s made over the years would have resulted in any other employee of the council being sacked – not him, WHY?

  4. Andrew Lye

    October 15, 2014 at 9:48 pm

    I understand why the photo always used shows him grinning.He will be the only person smiling in the County, having won the Pembrokeshire Lottery whatever agreement is reached.

  5. mark woodward

    October 16, 2014 at 10:26 am

    Since he has bought the council into disrepute, he should be sacked. No pay off, let him fight for it. End off matter. Thats how any other employee would be treated. Additionally his little buddy Jamie Adams needs to be suspended and fully investigated for his part in all of these shananigans.

  6. Paul Rutherford

    October 16, 2014 at 10:27 am

    I agree with Tomos, why should he get a payoff at all? Does he have some sort of ‘anti-sacking’ clause in his contract?

    The same sort of thing is happening at other councils, where it seems CE’s manage to get themselves fired with huge payoffs and then just move on to a recently vacated post.

    I believe this is happening at Wirral council, where their CE is going in a month or so. He’d better not come down here.

    Like most I know, I’m furious.

  7. Paul Cardin

    October 16, 2014 at 11:00 am

    Presumably, he won’t just be paid off; he’ll be gagged and given a clean bill of health to take with him – inside a compromise / settlement agreement.

    Here’s a survey of 345 English councils (which includes a link to £32 million worth of pay offs in Wales).

    Within, there’s approx. £226 million worth of compromise agreements with gagging clauses, over a six year period. It makes up one helluva big lump under the grubby “public sector carpet:

    http://wirralinittogether.wordpress.com/2013/02/19/2519/

  8. CJ

    October 19, 2014 at 9:12 am

    One word to describe this “disgraceful”.

  9. Ieuan Williams

    October 19, 2014 at 11:45 am

    All who voted for this pay off should consider themselves traitors to the People of Pembrokeshire.
    Bryn is laughing all the way to the bank! an dour services must suffer for his pay off.
    Jamie and co hang your heads in shame!

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News

Welsh Deputy Minister visits New Farm Shop

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Pictured : Julie Morgan AM

A new farm and produce shop on the Scolton Manor estate outside Haverfordwest has been visited by a Welsh Government Minister.

Julie Morgan AM – Deputy Minister for Health and Social Care – called at the shop to see the Welsh Government’s Intermediate Care Fund (ICF) in action.

The shop provides work experience, training and supported employment opportunities in retail and customer service for people with learning disabilities, disabilities and autism.

It is an addition to Pembrokeshire County Council’s existing supported employment offer through Norman Industries, the Authority’s sheltered employment factory in Snowdrop Lane, Haverfordwest.

The shop is the result of partnership working involving Workways+ and Experience for Industry – both funded by the European Social Fund through Welsh Government – Norman Industries and the management and staff at the Council-run Scolton Manor attraction.

The shop, which opened just a few weeks ago, will be supplying the public with fresh produce from the walled gardens at Scolton Manor, local meats, produce, tea and coffee.

It also provides a retail outlet for some of the arts, crafts and products made at Norman Industries.

Over the coming months the shop will also be supplying chutneys made by participants and employees at the supported employment café in Milford leisure centre ‘Caffi Man Cwrdd’.

The Deputy Minister was welcomed by County Councillor Tessa Hodgson, the Authority’s Cabinet Member for Social Services.

The farm shop has been partially resourced and staffed through some of the £400,000 ICF money allocated to expand supported employment opportunities regionally.

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Haverfordwest: Police promise extra patrols for GCSE results night

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THERE will be an increased police presence in Haverfordwest tonight, in response to an anticipated influx of young people who will be celebrating their GCSE results.

Parents are being asked to go over their child’s plan for the evening, before they head out. Sergeant Haydon Mathias is overseeing the operation.

He said: “It’s a big day for teenagers, and we understand they want to celebrate after all of their hard work.

“We’ll be there to make sure they do that safely, and without disrupting others.

“This is usually a busy night for us, and historically we have seen crime and anti-social behaviour rise. You’ll notice my team out and about from early this evening to stop that happening. They’ll be seizing alcohol from anyone they suspect is under the age of 18, and dealing with any other issues that arise.

“We’re asking parents to take the reins and discuss plans before your child goes out. Make sure you know where they’re celebrating, who they’re with, and how they’re getting home. It’s useful to make sure your child’s phone is fully charged, in case of an emergency.

“I encourage anyone with concerns to come and speak to an officer or Police Community Support Officer around the town, or contact Dyfed-Powys Police.”

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News

Llangwm Church Donation Box Stolen

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St Jerome’s Church: Second theft in a year!

 

A DONATION box has been stolen from a village church, the second theft from the historic building in a year.

The donation box at St Jerome’s Church, Llangwm, is believed to have been taken in the last few weeks.

The box is usually kept next to the Talking Tapestry of Langum, a project which tells the story of the village’s origin with the invasion of the Flemish in the 12th century and its later history.

Pamela Hunt of Heritage Llangwm said: “This theft is the second from St. Jerome’s in a year.

“If anyone has seen or knows anything, then please let the police know.

“If they feel unable to do that, but would like to contact us at St Jerome’s Church, then email info@heritagellangwm.org.uk

“We will treat your contact in the strictest confidence.”

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