Monday, 1 November 2010

H&F Homes pay £260K to poach new chief

A former council chief who retired on a gold-plated £50,000-a-year pension on the grounds of ill-health walked into a new publicly funded £260,000 job here at H&F Homes, the controversial organisation that has a strained relationship with many of its tenants, just 4 months later.

The Daily Mail is full of righteous anger about this, and as shameful as it maybe to agree with the Daily Mail on anything, in this case they do seem to have a point. Not so much at the insinuation that Nick Johnson, the very highly paid public official now receiving so many of our tax pounds, wasn't really sick when he left Bexley Council but more to the point - why is he paid quite so much when we are busily cutting services to the most vulnerable in our community?

Especially when to maximise the amount of our money he receives Mr Johnson has decided to set up his own company to receive this money. Documents obtained by The Mail on Sunday reveal the company has received £700,000 from H&F Homes since Mr Johnson took up his position in February 2008.
In the last financial year alone, Davies Johnson Ltd was paid £260,980 in ‘consultancy charges’. The year before, it banked £269,405.

In his defence our Council, who are at the moment closing numerous voluntary sector services and hiking charges for others on the grounds of tackling what Council leader Stephen Greenhalgh refers to as a "debt mountain" told the Mail that:

Nick Johnson is the best man for the job and has delivered a £232 million improvement scheme to council homes.

So that's OK then.

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