Croydon council staff are mulling over whether to accept a 1.25% pay rise, after revelations that their bosses earn more than £100,000 a year - with one expecting an 11.5% pay increase.
Unions have until Friday (4 September) to consider the offer, which is non-negotiable, according to the Croydon Advertiser.
But Unison's Croydon branch chairman James Young said members did not see the offer as a pay rise. "Members aren't very pleased considering the recent Freedom of Information request [by the Advertiser] with regard to the pay for the heads of departments and the chief executive.
"If members accept a lower pay increase this year, members will be looking for a considerable rise next year."
However, Young said unions were unlikely to push for industrial action, given the current economic climate.
The council's cabinet member for finance, Sara Bashford, said: "We all want to get a big pay rise, but we've got to look at it in the context of the economy at the moment."