Redundancy changes

CHANGES to the way redundancy payments are calculated at Northumberland County Council have been approved.

In a private session following the council’s budget-setting meeting councillors agreed to change the payment calculations in line with national guidelines and the need for the authority to make major savings.

On, April 1 this year the Northumberland severance scheme will remove the current ‘multiplier’, so payments will be based on the statutory table, using actual weekly pay.

All employees that were in formal consultation on redundancy on or before February 7, 2011 are subject to the existing scheme, with a multiplier of 1.75. But any consultation which has started or takes place after this date will be subject to the changes.

Alnwick town and county councillor Gordon Castle said: “I supported this even though I realise it is a reduction in the terms we can offer employees at the moment.

“The Government wants us to use capital receipts to fund redundancies. Paradoxically if we had kept the multiplier we would have been making more people redundant in order to pay for the multiplier.

“We are faced with very difficult choices and this one had to be made.”