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Gloucestershire director row escalates

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Gloucestershire CC’s opposition leader is threatening to report the council to the Information Commissioner over its refusal to provide details on the recruitment of a former spy chief as a non-executive director.

The council announced former GCHQ boss Sir David Pepper had been hired to “challenge and support” the council’s management team, against the background of its transformation plans to save£60m over the next four years (LGC - 23/10/08) .

Jeremy Hilton (Lib Dem) dubbed the move unconstitutional and, after his initial inquiries failed, launched Freedom of Information Act requests to find out details of Sir David’s pay and remit for the two days a month he will work.

“This man has a senior job in a county council and we don’t know what the contract says or how much he’s getting paid,” he said. “Why on earth wasn’t [the appointment] put out to competitive tender?”

Peter Bungard, Gloucestershire’s chief executive, insisted the council had responded “in full” to the Liberal Democrats’ request, within the limits of the Data Protection Act 1998.

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