We’re paying price for top-heavy council

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WITH reference to your story on the six-figure salaries earned by Scottish Borders Council chiefs (Hawick News, May 17), I find it incredible that they actually believe they are worth these wageswhich, in some cases, are more than the Prime Minister’s! And particularly when they are managing a small Scottish region with a population of around 113,000 and a household count of 52,233 properties. It would appear that David Cameron is being seriously shortchanged.

It is little wonder that the region has pot-holed roads, no inward investment and reduced services. It’s easily seen where our long-suffering rate-payers’ money is spent.

How did we manage before when we had Roxburgh, Ettrick and Lauderdale, Tweeddale and Berwickshire county councils? Much better. They were not top heavy and the region was a far better place for it.

To quantify your published salary list: it totals an astonishing £1,012,432 for only six employees, or £1,179,932 counting seven employees if you factor in the “unnamed employee” from the “unknown department!” Yes, this amount may include one-off payments for loss of office, or their pension contributions, but are they worth it when many Borderers are on the minimum wage?

So for all of you in Band A houses, it’s going to take around 1,400 households to pay for six employees or 1,632 if you include the seventh “unnamed employee”.

For those in Band D, it’s 934 and 1,088 households respectively. Whoever decided local authority pay structures must have previously worked for a large French cosmetic company. “Because your’re worth it.” Really?

Maybe they would be able to justify their salaries if the council improved services, brought industry to the area, and increased prosperity. And not simply send out Council Tax demands, impose parking charges, create obstacles and drown us in red tape.