More than 5,500 Hampshire County Council workers are set for a pay cut, with a number of employees losing several thousand pounds a year as part of a single status job re-evaluation.
Individual letters are being sent this week to 27,000 workers.
Council managers admit 15 percent of workers will have their pay cut.
Local government unions Unison, T&G and GMB are to ballot over the new pay structure.
Those who currently receive more pay than their new grade will have their salaries frozen for two years, and then cut.
Council bosses, who are on a different pay scale, are excluded from the agreement.
Peter Robertson, the chief executive, was paid up to £199,000 last year.
At the same time 400 librarians across Hampshire have voted overwhelmingly in favour of strikes to defend their jobs.
Of the 61 percent who took part in the consultative ballot, 87 percent voted for strike action.
Managers are spending £250,000 less on books and they plan to cut about 50 jobs including 37 from the library service.