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Derby defends chief replacement

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Derby City Council has explained how it came to appoint a new chief executive in August despite declaring the previous incumbent redundant in January.

Paul Robinson

Paul Robinson

Acting chief executive Paul Robinson (pictured) was promoted to the top job despite it being unusual for a post declared redundant to be filled so rapidly.

The council said Mr Robinson would be performing different duties from those of previous chief executive Adam Wilkinson, who took voluntary redundancy in January with a £100,000 compensation payment and three months’ pay in lieu of notice.

A statement said that the council had reviewed its corporate management structure following Mr Wilkinson’s departure leading to a reduced number of senior roles and reconfigured responsibilities. Finance director Roger Kershaw was summarily dismissed in April, although he has appealed the decision. It is not known if this appeal has been resolved. The council declined to comment.

“Following the corporate management restructure, the newly created post of chief executive involves the amalgamation of responsibilities previously assigned to the strategic director of resources and the chief executive and head of paid service roles,” it said.

While having a head of paid service is a legal obligation “the post title of chief executive is discretionary”, it added.

The statement said having examined the terms agreed for Mr Wilkinson’s departure, “the council’s external auditors were content, as are we, that the value for money test was met”, and that these had been “well within the affordability test that the council applies when considering all voluntary redundancy applications”.

A previous attempt to appoint Mr Robinson was abandoned in April when opposition councillors objected that insufficient notice had been given.




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