West Sussex County Council outgoing chief executive gets £265,000 settlement

By Ben Weisz
Political reporter, BBC Sussex

image captionNathan Elvery joined West Sussex County Council in 2017

West Sussex County Council agreed to pay its outgoing chief executive more than a quarter of a million pounds on his departure.

Nathan Elvery left the council in November, after two months away from duties on full pay.

The council has said there was "a need for a fresh start to address the challenges the council faced".

It now shares a chief executive with neighbouring East Sussex County Council.

image copyrightEmpics
image captionWest Sussex County Council now shares a chief executive with East Sussex County Council

In September, the county council said Mr Elvery was away from his duties on full pay but did not say why.

It came shortly after senior council figures saw a damning draft report on West Sussex's efforts to improve its children's services.

In November, Mr Elvery left the council for good, saying it had been an "honour and a privilege" to serve West Sussex.

At the time, neither the council nor Mr Elvery disclosed the size or nature of the settlement they had reached.

The council agreed to give Mr Elvery £265,000 - the equivalent of 16 months' pay.

It also spent more than £35,000 on legal advice around Mr Elvery's departure, according to information obtained by the BBC using Freedom of Information requests.

The authority said it received external advice to resolve the matter promptly.

In addition, Mr Elvery was paid more than £30,000 while "away from his duties" for the 60 days prior to his departure.

Last month, councillors agreed to share a chief executive with East Sussex County Council in a bid to improve services.

Becky Shaw took the helm on 6 January.

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