Tuesday, 3 May 2011
No Consolation for SOLACE
He is also a big cheese in an organisation called SOLACE - the acronym for the "Society of Local Authority Chief Executives and Senior Managers".... ok so the ASM bit doesn't follow but dont blame the Dame....
So what does SOLACE do?
Its an organisation that states it is there to promote excellence and professional development for its members. It also boasts to have a charitable trust which, before you start nodding enthusiastically its not looking after elderly folk, the homeless, or famine relief in Africa.
Solace Charitable Trust exists to promote the cause of local government and provide support and professional development of chief executives. Its main source of income is from Solace Enterprises Limited which is part of the same parent outfit, organising conferences and programmes and doing other things to promote local government. Last set of figures show income of almost £200,000 annually.
Now that got Hornet kind of wondering.........
Local government. Chief Executives. Professional development. Charitable trust.
By definition Chief Execs are not under paid, in many cases quite the opposite. Our own here in K&C receives more than David Cameron the Prime Minister, and a shade less than the President of the USA; not to mention the rather generous publicly funded pension pot.
If the Dame in the course of her professional development wants to go on a training course, she has to persuade her employer who will then fund it, or if not she has to put her hand in her pocket and do it herself. There isn't a charitable trust to fund training and professional development of truth seekers as far as she knows.
And that brings us neatly to the Council Credit Card.
Remember, Derek Myers the Chief Executive is a big cheese at SOLACE, so any conference organised by this group it would be fair to assume that he would need to be there, he is the top dog over at SOLACE after all.
Why then is there £3541 worth of conference fees paid for by the council credit card for him to attend five SOLACE conferences?
Why are the people of K&C paying for him to attend a conference he should be attending as part of the group organising it? Was he there as part of SOLACE, or was he there as Chief Executive of K&C?
Questions should be asked.
The question is, who is going to do it...............