Northamptonshire PCC Adam Simmonds paying staff £65,000
Northamptonshire's police and crime commissioner (PCC) Adam Simmonds has placed adverts to recruit three assistants at salaries of £65,000 each.
He has already made interim appointments but now plans to make the positions permanent.
Brendan Glynane, Liberal Democrat member of the Police and Crime Panel, said he wanted assurances that it would not be a "rubber-stamping exercise."
Mr Simmonds' spokesman said the process would be fair, open and transparent.
Mr Simmonds, a Conservative, was elected as PCC in November, one of 41 across England and Wales appointed to hold local police forces to account.
Shortly afterwards he appointed four assistant commissioners as part of an "interim management team" but faced criticism for giving the jobs to his "friends".
He said he had to make the appointments quickly.'Expanding empire'
End Quote Brendan Glynane Liberal Democrats
Some of the individuals involved have left well-paid jobs to go and work for him”
Three of those posts, with responsibility for justice, governance and public involvement, have now been advertised.
The assistant commissioner for justice will have to "translate the vision of the PCC into reality" while the governance role includes providing "an effective gateway to and from the commissioner".
The public involvement role will include leading Mr Simmonds' media and marketing strategies.
Mr Glynane said: "I don't accept the need for these particular posts.
"The government probably envisaged a PCC with one assistant, not the way it's going at the moment. It does seem to be an expanding empire."
Mr Glynane said the matter would be discussed at a Police and Crime Panel meeting on Tuesday.
"We would want to know it's an open, transparent process that's seen to be fair," he said.
End Quote Peter Heaton Assistant commissioner
The positions didn't exist previously because there was not a police and crime commissioner”
"Some of the individuals involved have left well-paid jobs to go and work for him."
Peter Heaton, interim assistant commissioner for public involvement, said: "The jobs have been advertised publicly. It's a competitive process.
"The positions didn't exist previously because there was not a police and crime commissioner.
"On 22 November, the commissioner was given nine weeks to produce a £123m budget and a police and crime plan. Those two things have happened.
"When the commissioner came into office, there was no capacity to help him do that.
"He took the view that he needed people straight away to make sure he met his obligation in law."
He said that police authorities, the forerunner to PCCs, had staff on comparable salaries.
Mr Heaton said it was hoped the fourth assistant commissioner post, for resources, would be advertised in the future.
He declined to say whether he had applied for the public involvement post.