What we're paying finance chief pales into insignificance if we get the results we need

DO we really care whether Fenland District Council continues to utilise the services of its former full time finance chief Mat Taylor? The issue has rarely been out of the news since the council went public with its much publicised decision to give Mr Tay

DO we really care whether Fenland District Council continues to utilise the services of its former full time finance chief Mat Taylor?

The issue has rarely been out of the news since the council went public with its much publicised decision to give Mr Taylor a part time, �20,000 a year contract, after he moved 10,000 miles away to Australia.

Recently Mr Taylor has been back at Fenland Hall, working four days a week, to formulate proposals which will lead to �2 million worth of savings from the council's budget.

Could someone else have done it? Possibly but since he was available and given the rigid timetabling of the savings demanded by the Cabinet, probably not.


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Some councillors disagree with the continuance of Mr Taylor's tenure, and from a public relations point of view perhaps the council could have re-introduced him back into England with a more appropriate fanfare.

Be that as it may we concur with the thoughts of chief executive Tim Pilsbury who accused some councillors of using Mr Taylor as a "political football."

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Mr Pilsbury emphasised that Mr Taylor is a member of his staff, that his contractual arrangements are for him to determine, and not for councillors, and its within his budgeting responsibilities to ensure posts are filled, services are maintained, and that by "applying flexibility we retain good quality people".

Councillors plan to raise Mr Taylor's appointment, re appointment or continued employment - call it what you will- at the next Tory group meeting.

That is their prerogative but meanwhile there's a council to run, a budget to balance, and an immense task ahead to deal with the ramifications of the economic down turn.

By comparison the trifling sum paid to Mr Taylor is by the way. If he delivers what's been requested, the Council Tax payers of Fenland will have much more reason to be grateful than dismayed.

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