A few weeks ago the Daily Telegraph were set to launch a fierce attack on Herr Leader Cockell's extraordinary ability to put together a portfolio of jobs which, grossed up, gave him a taxpayer funded income of around £125,000 a year-just £20,000 or so less than the PM! The article would also have focused on the use of council credit cards to pay for expensive hotels, air travel, holidays for council tenants to Malta and a whole range of other charges difficult for any sane person to rationalise. Mysteriously the editor, Tony Gallagher and his boss, Aidan Barclay decided to spike the story.
Daily Mail that it's top columnist, Andrew Pierce, has taken up the cudgels on behalf of taxpayers and launched a stinging rebuke to Herr von Cockle. Will he listen?
In fact, the Dame has heard from an old friend in the Cabinet Office that von Cockle is furiously lobbying for a Lord's Junior Ministerial job. If he pulls it off his taxpayer income could reach close to £200,000 a year. You could not make it up as the Dame's loyal factotum, Ex disgraced Mayor Barry Phelps was wont to say....
On another matter the Mail reported the other day that the new CE of the LGA could be in for a 'glittering prize'.
Merrick Cockell and his K&C Chief Exec, Derek Myers are right there at the top of the pile when it comes to taxpayer funded pay. Herr Leader has negotiated £120,000 pa plus, whilst his 'attack dog' Mr Myers is north of the PM at £270,000(with his rather generous pension contribution and other benefits.) For those who don't remember it was 'Unlikeable Myers' who successfully guided the High Court action to take night care away from bedridden ex ballet dancer, Miss Elaine McDonald-even though it cost a mere pittance. However, he had no qualms about allowing Herr von Cockell to use the new Bentley, " to save taxi fares"!
So no surprise then to hear that the new Chief Executive of the quango Local Government Group Herr Leader chairs for £54,000 a year,(3 days a week) is likely to be joining the Happy Few with a £200,000 a year wedge...or so the 5 million readers of the Daily Mail can read about today.
The Mail has this to say about Herr Leader von Cockle.The only error they make is saying that he has given up K&C leadership: that he refuses to do-to the chagrin of all!
"the political leader of the Local Government Group is Conservative Sir Merrick Cockell, former leader of Kensington & Chelsea Council. Sir Merrick is one of the local councillors estimated to have made more than £100, 000 in a single year in allowances paid by various local government bodies of which he has been a member"
above right:A typical Fat Cat Leader
As the Daily Mail correctly points out..... a lousy example flying in the face of all Eric Pickles's demands- and odder still that Cockell claims to advise Pickles! Of course, councillors won't get to see this article on the press circulation: Herr Leader only allows complimentary pieces to be circulated-how pathetic!