‘I’d take various routes to planning sites and call on constituents’
MR Livesley has responded to a number of questions about his expense claims for the 2014-15 financial year.
In the interest of fairness we are printing some of the questions referred to in the story and Mr Livesley’s full responses.
We would also like to make it clear Mr Livesley claimed 45p a mile for travel. Councillors can claim 52p a mile, depending on engine size, and Mr Livesley claimed the lower amount.
We asked Mr Livesley about claiming 47 miles for a 32-mile round trip to Sandbach 60 times, about claiming 16 miles for 10-mile round trips 219 times to Bollington and about 84 return trips from Macclesfield to Macclesfield at 12 miles each. Mr Livesley said: “The trips to Bollington from Macclesfield take into account the fact that I would take various routes depending on what actions I needed to do en route – for example I often went through Prestbury to look at planning applications on the North area agenda or those coming up on planning lists that we were all sent.
“I would also call in on constituents on various matters in and around Bollington, or via Higher Hurdsfield where I would visit sites and look at council issues such as blocked drains, signs or dog fouling issues that I had to report to the Higher Hurdsfield Parish Council and/or Bollington Town Council. I attended all meetings regarding highway footpaths and planning items, and reported most days to the clerk at Bollington Town Council on my findings and updates. I sent and received over 20,000 emails during my time representing the ward and some days I was responsible for several visits per day inspecting new housing sites. The Macclesfield trips were again not direct, as I often visited sites regarding planning and was involved in the ANSA set up which required multiple meetings with union representatives to discuss the new company.
“For Macclesfield to Sandbach journeys, I went via the B5359 and A535 to avoid Congleton which was incredibly congested and would cause me to miss several meetings had I not have the initiative to go a different way.
“The trip was 46.8 miles return from my house and 52 miles return from Bollington; a journey I took time and time again. Again, during my time as councillor, I would sometimes view sites that Cheshire East was looking at for a waste site before Middlewich was chosen.”
We asked Mr Livesley about claiming for meals because he was away from home but appearing to go back home as he also claimed for several return trips during the same day, for example, June 4, 2014 when he travelled:
From Macc to Nantwich back to Macc (54 miles claimed)
From Macclesfield to Sandbach back to Macclesfield (47 miles claimed)
From his home in Macclesfield to Macclesfield Town Hall and back (12 miles)
We asked if he returned to Macclesfield, why did he claim breakfast and lunch allowances for that day, totalling £13.70?
Mr Livesley replied: “June 4 – reason for claiming was that I had a meeting in Nantwich and left home at 7am with next meeting in Sandbach at 1pm. I then had a meeting at 2.45pm at Macclesfield Town Hall via town’s yard. I bought meals and ate it in a lay-by.”
He told the Express: “I have personally reached out to the council to resolve this matter as quickly as we can.”