The Basildon Labour Group will call on the Conservative Administration to drastically reduce the amount of money being paid to Councillors in Special Responsibility Allowances when the Council meets on July 19th.
In May the Conservatives passed an Order Paper which increased the amount of money being paid to Conservative Councillors in allowances by £72,500. It meant that the current administration in Basildon is the most expensive to the Basildon Council taxpayer, in the history of the Authority.
Labour Group Leader Adele Brown, who is proposing the policy change, explained “We are calling on the Conservatives to cap the total amount of Councillor allowances, inclusive of all special responsibility allowances, at £400,000 per year. Last year when Labour was in Administration, our allowance scheme cost less than £400,000 but it was not as bloated as the current Conservative Administration which is costing almost £500,000 per year.
“The public are naturally very angry that at a time when the Tories have stopped the search for a new site for the Felmores Bail Hostel and are reviewing whether to once again shut down the hot meals service for the elderly at the George Hurd Centre, they have awarded themselves such a monumental pay rise. It should not have happened. Given that on average, Conservative Councillors are now earning £2,200 per meeting that they chair, with meetings lasting from between just 19 minutes and an hour, the amounts of money Conservatives are pocketing, for such little work, is grotesque.
“Our motion, if passed, would mean that the taxpayer would not be forking out huge sums of money for Conservative Councillors, but in fact capping the total amount payable to all 42 Councillors at £400,000 a year. This is a far fairer way of operating. The Conservatives must listen to Labour and reduce the amount of money they are paying themselves.”