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Parker Pay-Off: "Heads Must Roll"

A former government minister has called for heads to roll at the next election, following news that former States Chief Executive Charlie Parker was given a £500,000 pay-off.

Senator Sam Mezec, who's called it an insult to the hard-working men and women of this island, has not ruled out bringing forward a vote of no confidence in the Chief Minister.

After it was revealed that Charlie Parker took a second role as a non-executive director, Senator Mezec resigned from the government. The former Housing Minister says he told the Chief Minister it was a mistake that could cost the public - and this pay-off shows that it has.

Responding to whether he'd bring a vote of no confidence, Senator Mezec says he's not had time to discuss that with non-Reform States members, but hinted it was possible if it's decided that's the most appropriate way forward.

The Chief Minister faced a vote of no confidence in November and survived. Another six months have to pass before another challenge can be lodged.

Fellow Reform Jersey members have also tweeted their displeasure at the severance payment given to the former Chief Executive.

Deputy Inna Gardiner, who is chair of the panel scrutinising government spending, also tweeted to say that the government needs to demonstrate that provides value for money.

The severance payment was found to be a breach of the rules on how public money should be spent, as it was more than what he was entitled under his contract. 

The States Treasury was also not consulted before the agreement was reached.

Chief Minister Senator John Le Fondre called that 'an oversight' and described the payoff as appropriate to avoid legal action.

Comptroller and Auditor General Lynn Pamment says the settlement agreed was 'reasonable in light of the potential claims that the employer might have faced and the costs of defending them.'

"The circumstances of and processes followed in respect of the severance of the employment of the former Chief Executive have highlighted a number of weaknesses in policies and procedures in the States of Jersey.

"Recommendations from previous Comptroller and Auditor General (C&AG) reports in respect of improved documentation standards for cases leading to compromise agreements and ensuring that reports to and minutes of the SEB include a clear rationale for exit terms proposed and agreed, have not been implemented."

Paul Martin is now in place as interim CEO, with a full-time replacement for Mr. Parker expected from next year.

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