Public purse paying part of officer’s tax

Sir Bob Kerslake
Sir Bob Kerslake
Have your say

A former Sheffield Council chief executive is among Britain’s most senior civil servants having part of their tax bills paid using public money, it has emerged.

Sir Bob Kerslake, head of the Civil Service, who was council chief executive from 1997 to 2008, is among those benefiting from tax payments covering items such such as official cars and rail travel.

The arrangements – described by tax advisers as ‘highly unusual’ – were made between government departments and the taxman more than a decade ago.

The effect is to increase the value of officials’ pay packages by up to £30,000 a year at the expense of taxpayers – usually tax on benefits is met by the employee, not the employer.

Richard Bacon, of the public accounts committee, said he was ‘concerned’ officials are being given tax-free benefits while members of the public have to pay the taxman for theirs.

He said: “These are out of line with what one would expect from the way people in the private sector are treated.”