Council allowances - I’ve taken a cut
A LETTER (September 8) stated that all district councillors “had their noses in the trough”, and gave the impression that all 52 councillors received �7,500, rising to �8,615 including travel expenses.
A LETTER from Alex and Janet Gibson (September 8) stated that all district councillors “had their noses in the trough”, and gave the impression that all 52 councillors received �7,500, rising to �8,615 including travel expenses.
Co-incidentally, later that day, I attended a district council meeting where Councillor Mike Simpson revealed that the Conservative group had waived any increase in their allowances for the latest financial year.
I campaigned as a potential new councillor last spring, and one of my leaflets said I would lobby for a reduction in councillors’ allowances.
With that in mind, I would like to state that I have taken a reduction in the allowance paid to me, so rather than any entitlement I would receive standing still, as the Conservative Group has done, my allowance has been reduced by five per cent.
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The majority of my Liberal Democrat colleagues have taken a reduction as well. It’s my view there is a subtle difference between not taking an increase, which many of us in work have faced in recent years, and actually taking a reduction.
Mr Gibson appears to have added all the payments together and divided by 52. This ignores the fact that most councillors received a basic allowance of just over �4,200. Those with ‘special responsibilities’ receive additional allowances.
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- 2 Complaints as elderly people wait in freezing conditions for vaccine
- 3 Hunts police called to 'numerous breaches' of covid regulations
- 4 Driver of fully laden HGV who failed breath test 'couldn't stand up unaided'
- 5 Two weeks left to respond to proposed flight path over Huntingdonshire
- 6 Chief executive takes 'personal oversight' of inquiry into deputy leader's farm tenancy
- 7 Two men to appear in court to face aggravated burglary charges.
- 8 Villagers call for action after 'worst floods in years'
- 9 Hinchingbrooke paediatrician’s relief after getting Covid-19 vaccine
- 10 Pair jailed after drugs and cash worth £184k seized in 'peaceful' village
Living in Hartford, I have so far attended five meetings in Pathfinder House, and have not claimed anything for travel. I note that there are other councillors who do likewise. Astonishingly, if I were to make a claim, it could be done at 60p per mile.
I would like to suggest that if anyone is interested in seeing what individual councillors are paid, follow Mr. Gibson’s suggestion and Google ‘Councillors’ expenses for Huntingdonshire’. A few clicks later, you can bring up a table detailing every penny claimed. I can promise it won’t show everyone receiving the same amounts.
And while we do have to attend meetings – it’s more than “a few” but I won’t split hairs – much more of my time has been spent, enjoyably so, acting on case-work from the people who elected me to serve them.
Councillor STE GREENALL