IT'S nice work - if you can get it. As the credit crunch claims jobs left, right and centre, Bournemouth council is looking to recruit an "executive director of transformation".

And despite the fact the council is heading for a £2.5 million overspend this year, the job comes with a £101,000 salary, £10,000 relocation package, final salary pension scheme and other benefits.

It's believed the salary will make the successful applicant the second highest paid official at Bournemouth council.

Previously, the chief executive was the only person earning over £100,000, with a recorded salary of £121,205 in 2006/07.

Mark Wallace, campaigns director of the TaxPayers' Alliance, said: "With the council making a massive loss and everyone struggling to make ends meet in the credit crunch, this is a totally inappropriate new luxury for the council.

"People who have seen their council tax bills go through the roof are frankly sick and tired of the massive growth in highly paid management jobs with questionable purposes."

Labour leader Cllr Ben Grower said: "I knew they wanted to appoint someone to oversee the development of the town but I am amazed they are offering such a high salary, particularly as we've got budget constraints."

And Liberal Democrat Cllr Richard Smith slammed the ruling Tories for advertising the job without first consulting other councillors or unions.

The recommendation to create the new post will go before cabinet members on Wednesday and before full council later in the month. But the job is already being advertised with a closing date of October 16.

Cllr Smith said: "How can opposition councillors hold the administration to account when things are done behind closed doors?

"This council once had a lot of very well-paid executive directors. We reduced that to direct money into frontline services.

"Now it appears money is once again being directed into bureaucracy and administration."

There are also fears the council is poised to transfer the administration of housing and council tax benefits to a private company and that the new director is being brought in to spearhead this.

The post of "executive director for major projects" is being formally deleted at the same time the new post is created, although the major projects post-holder Stephen Godsall is still employed part-time by the council.

Chief executive Pam Donnellan said: "In reviewing the management structure of the council I have concluded that we need to fill (the post of) the executive director to deliver business transformation and change while managing our corporate services.

"Rising demands for our services and additional responsibilities placed on us by the government, coupled with tightening financial settlements, are placing increased pressure on council tax.

"As a council, we are keen to minimise council tax increases as well as being committed to becoming increasingly efficient.

"To do both, we must look at different ways of working to avoid cuts to frontline services, and this key challenge will be the responsibility of this post-holder."