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Caerphilly Council 'reviewing' Wales Audit report

We are currently reviewing the recommendations contained in the report.

It is important to stress that the decision of the Senior Remuneration Committee was rescinded at a meeting of full council on January 17th, where independent external legal advice was received and a new decision was reached.

The Wales Audit Office report will be considered at a meeting of full council in due course, so it would be inappropriate to comment further at this stage.

– Spokesperson for Caerphilly County Borough Council

Pay rises to Caerphilly staff were 'unlawful'

Pay rises made to senior members of staff at Caerphilly County Borough Council were "unlawful on a number of grounds", according a report by the Wales Audit Office.

In December workers at the council staged a walkout after the Chief Executive was reportedly given a pay rise of around £27,000 in the September.

The meeting of the Senior Remuneration Committee was not properly advertised in accordance with the Local Government Act and neither were agendas for the meeting made available for public inspection as they should have been.

Certain officers, including the Chief Executive, who would have been (and indeed were) beneficiaries of the decision were present at the meeting to approve the salary increases. No declarations of interest were made and these officers did not leave the room while the decision was made. Consequently they participated in the decision making process when they had a disqualifying financial interest.

Additionally, the report presented to the Committee was written by the Chief Executive who was himself a direct beneficiary of the decision made and who gave advice on a matter in which he had a financial interest.

Finally, this report did not consider the full range of options identified. Nor was there any detailed and explicit consideration of these options in the meeting of the Committee.

– Anthony Barrett, the Appointed Auditor and Assistant Auditor General

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Walkout planned over Caerphilly council pay row

Workers at Caerphilly council will stage a walkout on Monday over a decision to award a 27,000 thousand pound pay rise to the chief executive at the council.

It's angered local government workers as they say they've had their pay frozen for three years.

The council says the pay meets an independent external scheme and that it was presented to full council with no complaints at the time.

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UNISON to lead lunchtime walkout on Monday over 20% pay rise for Caerphilly Council Chief Officers: http://t.co/oB35cr5s

Angry relatives meet with council over cemetery ban

Caerphilly Council's head bereavement officer will meet with local campaigners today over the decision to remove and ban all grave decorations in the Betwellty Church cemetery.

More than 1,500 people signed a petition against the policy which was announced earlier this year. The local action group is due to meet with the bereavement officer later today.

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