Jobs for the boys: The quangocrat merry-go round

June 06, 2016 1:00 AM

The TaxPayers' Alliance reveals today that despite the government's repeated pledge of a "bonfire of quangos", over 3,000 positions were filled on the boards of quangos in 2014-15.

Quangos retain significant responsibility over areas of policy with the sum of their budgets stretching into tens of billions of pounds of taxpayers' money. This research note investigates who sat on quango boards, who sat on multiple boards in the same year and their attendance rate at board meetings. Where available, data on remuneration, allowances or honorariums has also been collected.

Today's research reveals that in 2014-15:

  • At least 135 quango board members sat on more than one board
  • Fifteen individuals sat on more than two quango boards
  • Jonathan Baume sat on five quango boards
    • Receiving up to £56,695 of taxpayers’ money
  • Professor Lynda Warren sat on four quango boards
    • Receiving up to £38,500 of taxpayers’ money
  • Collectively, quango board members missed over 1,500 or around 12 per cent of all meetings
  • Over 3,000 positions were filled on the boards of quangos in 2014-15
  • Just 4.5 per cent of public appointees made declarations of political activity in 2014-15

Commenting on the research note, Jonathan Isaby, Chief Executive of the TaxPayers' Alliance, said:

"It is deeply concerning that unaccountable quangos continue to thrive and seem to exist as a network for the public sector elite, many of whom have been in the system for years, taking on highly-paid positions at bodies with completely disparate purposes.

"Taxpayers paying for these cushy jobs will want to know what qualifies people to sit on the Boards of several different bodies with completely disparate purposes. The fact that so many Board meetings were missed will also raise questions around these fat cats' sincerity and commitment to these jobs. Hard-pressed families expect their money to pay for essential services, not to be squandered on the quangocrat gravy train."

Click here to see the full research note

Click here to download the full data table

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