Why did the Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner for Merseyside need a seconded part-time Private Secretary costing £16,828 a year?

Why did the Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner for Merseyside need a seconded part-time Private Secretary costing £16,828 a year?

Job Description Private Secretary to Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner seconded from Liverpool City Council

Why did the Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner for Merseyside need a seconded part-time Private Secretary costing £16,828 a year?

                                                

Job Description Private Secretary to Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner seconded from Liverpool City Council
Job Description Private Secretary to Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner seconded from Liverpool City Council

A few years ago, before Jane Kennedy was re-elected as Police and Crime Commissioner earlier this year, the Merseyside Police and Crime Panel agreed to her request for a Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner for Merseyside in June 2014. Previously Jane Kennedy had stated she wouldn’t need a Deputy but changed her mind.

The appointment of Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner (a part-time role of three days a week work with a salary of over £30,000) was first made to Cllr Ann O’Byrne (at the time also Liverpool City Council Cabinet Member for Housing), then in August 2015 the Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner changed to Cllr Sue Murphy (a St Helens Council councillor). Cllr Sue Murphy continued as Deputy PCC until the end of Jane Kennedy’s term of office in May 2016. After Jane Kennedy’s re-election Sue Murphy was then was re-appointed as Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner by the councillors on the Merseyside Police and Crime Panel on the 14th July 2016.

In addition to the £31,800 paid to the Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner (from June 2014 to the 1st May 2016, then from 14th July 2016 onwards) Liverpool City Council had been providing a seconded employee (part-time) to be a “Private Secretary” to the Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner at a cost of £16,828 a year.

I requested the contract during the audit. In the interests of transparency here is the Secondment Contract Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Merseyside Liverpool City Council Private Secretary to Deputy PCC (zipped file). It’s provided as a compressed (zipped file) in case you want to read it (apologies for the poor contrast on the first 5 pages but that’s how it was provided to me).

However here’s one quote from the “Principal Accountabilities” bit of the job description, “Vet incoming correspondence addressed to the Deputy Police & Crime Commissioner/Chief of Staff, deciding on the most appropriate manner by which it should be dealt with, this ensuring that only relevant correspondence is filtered through to the Deputy Police & Crime Commissioner.”

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