In an unexpected and welcome move, Manchester City Council is to tie the wages of its Executive members and senior management team to the Council’s overall success in reducing carbon emissions.
“We have a bold and innovative vision for Manchester” said Sir Richard Leese, leader of the Council, “and part of that is making it the greenest city in the UK, and a world-leader in low carbon technologies. In 2009 we created the Stakeholder Climate Change Action Plan, which called for the City’s emissions to be cut by 41% by 2020. It’s a plan for all of Manchester, not just the Council. Now we are going to deliver. To push forward on the pace of it, we have decided to tie my pay – and that of my fellow Labour Executive members, and Howard, Jessica and other members of our world-class senior officer team – to cutting back on emissions. And we’re not going to do it by just selling off buildings. We mean ‘business’ – no carbon cuts, no pay rises.”
Details have not been released, but sources indicate that the idea arose from Councillor Kate Chappell, Executive Member for the Environment, who said that she will soon be blogging about the scheme, and the broader agenda of creating a ‘low carbon culture.’
A source within the Labour party told MCFly “It was a bit of a fight, to be honest. Pat and John were not exactly happy about it, but Joanne, Kevin, Angeliki backed it, and they’re a big part of the intransigent ‘green bloc,’ and they carried the day.”
Gavin Elliott, leader of the Stakeholder Steering Group, welcomed the move and felt sure that the private sector would soon be copying the Council’s move, starting with his own organisation, BDP.
A further council proposal – to tie wages to the accuracy of statements given to scrutiny committees – was rejected after a deeply unedifying and depressing battle.
Time-scales are uncertain, but Councillor Chappell said that, recognising the supreme importance of the issue there was “no time to waste,” the plans would be implemented as quickly as the council’s bureaucratic machinery could manage, probably by 1st April 2016. Or 2017. At absolute worst by 2018. Or maybe ’19.