Liverpool City Council appoints new chief executive

Ged Fitzgerald
Image caption Ged Fitzgerald is currently chief executive of Lancashire County Council

Liverpool City Council has appointed a new chief executive, following an outcry over the position's salary.

Ged Fitzgerald, 49, currently chief executive of Lancashire County Council, is due to take up the post in February.

Communities and Local Government Secretary Eric Pickles criticised the authority in August when it advertised the role with a £197,500 salary - £55,000 more than the prime minister.

Council leader Joe Anderson said Mr Fitzgerald would run an efficient city.

Mr Fitzgerald worked for the city council as head of economic development and European affairs and then as director of City Challenge from 1996 to 1998.

The father-of-one became chief executive of Rotherham council in 2001, before taking up the same role at Sunderland City Council in 2004.

'Breathtaking transformation'

He said: "I'm delighted to be offered the post of chief executive of one of the most exciting and dynamic cities in the world.

"Liverpool's transformation over the past decade has been nothing short of breathtaking and Liverpool has shown every other major city that it is possible to shake off years of decline and stagnation and to reinvent yourself as a modern, enterprising and vibrant place.

"Despite the tough economic times, it's vital we continue to change and improve."

He said he would be working with staff to ensure resources were directed at front-line services and support those who need "the lifeline of our services most".

He also said he wanted to build stronger links with business and enterprise to attract investment and new jobs which are "so vital to our future prosperity".

Mr Anderson said: "Appointing Ged Fitzgerald is a real coup for Liverpool.

"He brings a depth of experience and expertise at a time when the city needs it most."

The council must formally approve the appointment on 10 November.

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