The revelation that council Chief Exec, Nicola “LADY GAGA” Yates earned £18k in wages from the Bristol 2015 Ltd company at the rate of £60 an hour may prove to be very bad news for this beleaguered money-grabbing council boss.
There’s already widespread OUTRAGE that Gaga scooped herself an extra £18k of public money from Bristol 2015 while cheekily trousering £193k from the public purse this year for a job paid at £160k. Now we’ve discovered that her contract of employment specifically PREVENTS her from doing another job or retaining earnings without the “EXPRESS CONSENT” of the council.
Gaga’s contractual obligations are contained in the Joint Negotiating Committee for Local Authority Chief Executives Conditions of Service Handbook. And here’s the first thing it says:
3. WHOLE-TIME SERVICE
The chief executive shall devote his or her whole-time service to the work of the council and shall not engage in any other business or take up any other additional appointment without the express consent of the council. He or she shall not subordinate his or her duty as chief executive to his or her private interests or put himself or herself in a position where his or her duty and private interests conflict.
In other words, Gaga should not be taking further employment without the “express consent” of councillors. Where is that consent for her role at Bristol 2015 Ltd? It also says if she does take on any other employment it should not CONFLICT with her role as Chief Exec of the council.
For example, she should not be putting herself in a position where she’s WITHHOLDING accounts and ignoring the Local Government Transparency Code on behalf of Bristol 2015 Ltd, who privately employ her. Because this openly CONFLICTS with her duty as the chief executive of the council where she needs to be robustly upholding this code on our behalf and ensuring all public expenditure is properly accounted for.
The explanation currently emerging from the Mayor’s office over Gaga’s employment and earnings at Bristol 2015 Ltd reeks of BULLSHIT. The Mayors sidekick-in-chief, Deputy Mayor Geoff “” Gollop provided a long-winded explanation of Gaga’s conduct to the council’s Audit Committee last Friday.
The dodgy Tory accountant blustered that Gaga had to be paid a salary in order to demonstrate her role of Chief Exec at Bristol 2015 Ltd was independent of her role as Chief Exec of Bristol City Council. Gollop effectively seemed to claim that paying £1k a month into Gaga’s bank account made any conflict of interest she might have disappear in A PUFF OF SMOKE. Nonsense. Gaga’s conflict of interest cannot just vanish in exchange for cash.
The correct practice should be that at any Bristol 2015 Ltd meetings where business of the council is discussed, Gaga should LEAVE the meeting. Similarly at any meeting of the council where Bristol 2015 Ltd is discussed, Gaga should LEAVE the meeting, which makes it pretty much impossible for Gaga to perform both Chief Exec roles. Any claim by Fergo and Gollop that greasing her palm with cash somehow makes it possible is a load of BENT BOLLOCKS of the highest order.
And it doesn’t stop here. There’s some further dodgy practice around Gaga’s Bristol 2015 job. Gaga’s contract also states:
8. INCLUSIVE SALARIES
Salaries shall be deemed to be inclusive, and all other fees and emoluments, unless they are covered by Paragraph 9 (returning officer, etc.) or the authority expressly agrees that they shall be retainedby the officer, shall be paid by the officer into the council’s accounts.
In other words, any extra salary payable to Gaga for any other work she does SHOULD GO TO THE COUNCIL not to her. Unless “the authority expressly agrees”. Where is this agreement from councillors? Looks like Gaga owes us £18k then.
There it is then. At least two occasions when Gaga’s BREACHED HER CONTRACT plus 18 months of undeclared and unaddressed conflicts of interest between Bristol City Council and Bristol 2015 Ltd she’s done NOTHING about.
Is it time for some disciplinary action down at the Counts Louse?