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Tax-payer foots ‘£100k’ bill for Tower Hamlets Council tribunal payout

18:21 24 January 2013

Crisis... Tower Hamlets Council

Crisis... Tower Hamlets Council

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A senior council officer has received what is believed to be a six-figure compensation payout after bringing a discrimination case against Tower Hamlets Town Hall, it has emerged.

A senior council officer has received what is believed to be a six-figure compensation payout after bringing a discrimination case against Tower Hamlets Town Hall, it has emerged.

The out-of-court settlement is thought to relate to the appointment process to fill the vacant chief executive position at the council.

A claim is said to have been brought for discrimination in September last year, before a settlement was reached in December for what those close to the case believe was around £100,000 – a figure also appearing on social networking sites and blogs.

At Wednesday night’s council meeting cabinet member for resources Cllr Alibor Choudhury – responding to a question from a member of the public on the claim - said a payment had been made in an out of court settlement.

But he said he could not confirm a figure due to “confidentiality”.

The dispute is thought to relate to the council’s failure to appoint a replacement for former chief executive Kevan Collins, who left the £195k top job in July 2011.

A bitter dispute over Mr Collins’ replacement was then played out by councillors for more than a year, and it is believed the settlement reached relates to one of the unsuccessful candidates, who remains a senior council employee.

The dispute over the vacant chief executive position left the council facing the prospect of intervention from Town Hall trouble-shooter the Local Government Association.

But at Wednesday’s behind-closed-doors vote, councillors unanimously agreed to approve the extension of acting head of paid services Stephen Halsey’s contract until after the 2014 Mayoral election.

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