A local government expert is not surprised the chief executive of the Auckland Council made $840,000 in the past financial year.
Doug McKay's payment includes a $70,000 bonus for setting up the Super City in the previous year.
Massey University Public Management Group director Dr Andy Asquith says the old adage of 'If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys' is right.
"The job of CEO of Auckland Council is probably the most important job in New Zealand, so therefore we need to pay a salary that will attract a candidate of the right calibre."
Andy Asquith says there's no organisation in New Zealand of a similar size and scale to the Auckland Council.
Photo: Ed Swift