The BBC is to publish the salary and expenses details for its 100 most senior managers in a new transparency drive announced today.
In a speech in Manchester, BBC director general Thompson said the Daily Telegraph’s revelations about MPs’ expenses had added “even greater anger and urgency” to the debate about how public money is spent.
The corporation currently publishes the salaries of the 10 members of the BBC executive board.
Thompson said that this would be extended to a further 100 named staff – the top 50 earners in BBC management and the top 50 decision-makers.
The BBC will also publish quarterly line-by-line expenses data for these 100 staff, including full details of their hospitality and gifts.
The new publication scheme will officially come into effect in September.
But the corporation is expected to publish the full board expenses, going back five years, shortly before midday today in response to a Freedom of Information request.
It will also today publish some of the top-line expenses data and salary bands for another 50 senior staff.
Parts of the information will be redacted to protect the identities of any sources taken to lunch or any secret meetings with talent about joining the BBC.
“I have asked all of my colleagues to ensure that they only remove or anomymise information when it is absolutely essential,” Thompson said today.
“As a result, from today I believe that those who make FoI requests of the BBC will see fewer redactions than in the past.”
He told the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy annual conference “Public expectations for disclosure from every public body are clearly growing – especially in the wake of the controversy over MPs’ expenses.
“I also believe that those MPs who have asked me and my colleagues the question – What about you? What is the BBC going to disclose? – have got a fair point.”