Council say ‘no’ to further pay increase – for now...

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COUNTY councillors decided not to further review their expenses, after the freeze on their pay was lifted.

The governance committee discussed the possibility of a review of members’ expenses – but some thought it was inappropriate.

At a full council meeting in October, councillors voted to lift the scheme, which meant members allowances will increase by one per cent, a change of mileage rates will 
go from 53.8p to 59.25p, and a 2.7 per cent increase in subsistence costs was passed.

But the governance committee voted against any further reviews to increase the expenses further, as the council tries to save £141m in the next four years..

“I think we should maintain the freeze on members’ allowances,” said Liberal Democrat James Walsh.

He said full council’s decision to lift the freeze on expenses rises was a ‘mistake’, and to review the situation would imply a further rise in expenses.

Leader of the council Louise Goldsmith, said: “It is up to people whether they choose to take that uplift or not. I have chosen not to take the uplift.

“I think it is up to members to do whatever they think is appropriate. We are all grown-up.

“Everybody is struggling at the moment and I think it would be wrong to take any further action.”

No review of expenses will be made at this time.