Arab Today, arab today senior bbc staff wages cut
Last Updated : GMT 16:24:29
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Senior BBC staff wages cut

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today Senior BBC staff wages cut

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In an inaugural speech, Lord Patten of Barnes promised action over the “toxic” issue of executive pay. The Conservative peer, who took over last month at the BBC Trust, the governing body, said he would cut the number of senior managers from around 530 to about 200 by 2015. He said this would create a smaller group of people more clearly accountable for spending the licence fee. Lord Patten said the director-general’s current wage would be used as a “cap” for his successor, who would be paid a lower salary. “Licence fee payers don’t expect the BBC to pay sky-high commercial rewards to people that work for a public service,” he said. A freeze on bonuses will continue for the most senior executives and perks will be reduced. Lord Patten told the Royal Television Society last night: “No executive board member will get a bonus in future, the public service BBC needs to distance itself, in this way, from the market. Private health insurance will be phased out for senior managers. Senior staff shouldn’t have those sorts of benefits if they are not available to everyone.” Lord Patten said that he wanted the BBC to be the first organisation to implement proposals from the recent Hutton Review into public sector pay, including publishing the ratio of the salaries of rank and file staff to those enjoyed by executives. Figures released yesterday showed that the median BBC salary is £39,668, while the median pay for those on its executive board is nine times that figure, at £352,900. Mr Thompson’s salary is 17 times the average wage. Those multiples would not be allowed to rise, the chairman said. “Moreover, although of course the BBC must continue to strive to attract and retain outstanding candidates for senior posts, the trust’s intention is that over time this multiple will fall.” He added: “This action on pay is important. Because the BBC must do right by the licence fee payers who pick up the bill and by all the staff that work throughout the organisation at every level.” Lord Patten also said there would be a new, streamlined complaints procedure that would be “quicker and easier to understand”, and ruled out the sale of the BBC’s commercial arm, Worldwide, which will instead be asked to help fund the World Service. He said it could sell magazine operations and the Lonely Planet guide book business. He rejected demands from Jeremy Hunt, the Culture Secretary, to let the Government’s spending watchdog carry out snap investigations. “The BBC is not a state broadcaster. It is not under parliamentary control,” he said. He also said the trust would carry out more regular impartiality investigations into its news coverage.

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