The £65,000 per annum salary will see Finnegan overseeing ‘strategic direction and leadership for the city council’s marketing, communications, web, tourism and events teams, in addition to heading up the press office’.
Finnegan had been working for the council last year and early in 2013 on a consultancy basis until local furore in Salford related to his fee amidst large-scale spending cuts, forced the council to rethink his basis of employment.
Finnegan, a former journalist, is one of the region’s best-known political lobbyists, activists and political PRs.
He spent 15 years with the MEN before moving to Liverpool to take up the role of Director of Communications at Liverpool City Council following that city being awarded the status of European Capital of Culture.
However, that role ended in a highly-publicised falling out with Finnegan consistently denying he was the mythical Tony Parrish of Liverpool Evil Cabal blog fame.
Since leaving Liverpool, he has been freelancing and was the driving force behind Sound Communication CIC.
Salford City Mayor Ian Stewart said: “Everyone involved felt that Matt was the best candidate for this important, senior role. He has huge experience in delivering first class communications and in working positively with local authorities.
“At a time of government austerity, savage budget cuts and falling living standards, it is more important than ever that our communications and marketing teams have strong leadership, understand all the issues facing the city and, above all, can communicate it successfully.
“The bottom line is that we must do more, with less, to properly and professionally inform local residents about the issues facing the council and local services, as we strive to promote and market the city globally to create jobs and increase prosperity here.
“We believe Matt is the right person to help us to do that. I’m looking forward to welcoming him to the Salford team.”