MAYOR CUTS CAR PERK

Anna prefers the bus to chauf­feur-driven ride

Sunday Tasmanian - - Front Page - ANNE MATHER

HO­BART Lord Mayor Anna Reynolds has re­fused one of the big­gest perks of the job: a chauf­feur-driven car.

Ald Reynolds said she wanted to spare ratepay­ers from the $33,000 an­nual cost of the ser­vice, and she didn’t re­ally go in for pomp.

She said she would rather hop on a bus or bike than be driven around.

“There’s al­ways been this pomp and cer­e­mony around the role, but times have changed,” she said.

“Politi­cians need to demon­strate some con­nec­tion with the com­mu­nity, as well as mod­esty in terms of us­ing ratepay­ers’ money.”

In­stead of be­ing driven to ap­point­ments and meet­ings, Ald Reynolds said she would use more af­ford­able and sus­tain­able trans­port op­tions.

“I will use a va­ri­ety of other meth­ods best suited to the trip: my own car, taxis or Uber, walk, share a lift, catch a bus or ride a bike,” she said.

The re­tired chauf­feur-driven may­oral car, a black Holden Caprice, will be sold at auc­tion in the com­ing weeks for an es­ti­mated $25,000. The rev­enue will be re­turned to coun­cil’s plant and equip­ment bud­get.

The Lord Mayor’s car was due for re­place­ment, and a new ve­hi­cle would have cost an ad­di­tional $50,000.

Ald Reynolds said the cost of run­ning the Lord Mayor’s ve­hi­cle in the 12 months to 2018 had been about $33,000 – with monthly op­er­at­ing ex­penses in­clud­ing fuel, driver salary, uni­form, mo­bile phone and other as­so­ci­ated costs.

“Based on the data of pre­vi­ous lord may­oral travel it is es­ti­mated that the cost of do­ing some of the car jour­neys by taxi or Uber will be around $4500 per year,” she said.

“But some of these trips will be un­der­taken by other meth­ods. So I ex­pect the on­go­ing op­er­a­tional sav­ing will be around $25,000 per year.”

She said there was a trend for lord may­ors to dump the chauf­feur-driven car.

“The new Lord Mayor of Mel­bourne, Sally Capp, also ditched the chauf­feur-driven car fol­low­ing her elec­tion in mid-2018,” she said.

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