Councillors vote to give themselves raise in basic allowance
COTSWOLD councillors have voted to give themselves an 11 per cent pay rise with their basic allowance increasing by £1,000.
The rise was agreed at Tuesday’s full council meeting at Cotswold District Council’s headquarters in Cirencester.
District councillors on the authority have not received a pay rise since April 2008, and will receive a total £5,000 per annum.
The decision, recommended by an independent panel, was backed by the new administration, the Liberal Democrats.
A council officer said although the pay had not increased for 11 years, “the workload had risen for councillors”.
The independent remuneration panel also recommended that pay is increased annually in line with an agreed measure.
Speaking in the meeting, councillor Mark Harris (LD, Abbey) said: “Most of us thought it politically wasn’t a good idea, but there are enough politicians not making tough decisionsin this country.”
Reacting to this, Conservative councillor Ray Theodoulou (Coln Valley) said: “To hide behind the skirts of an independent committee is despicable. Blame someone else, that is usually the way.”
A recorded vote resulted in the pay rise being passed by a majority of six.
Council leader Joe Harris (LD, St Michaels) said after the meeting: “The reason we had it today was because the previous administration allocated it for the first meeting after the election. Politically inconvenient but it is a decision that had to be made.”
Opposition leader Tony Berry said: “As Conservatives we believe that this was more than required, and voted against it.
“The fact that this is the very first thing to come forward leads me to worry about a number of other things the Liberal Democrats have in their manifesto.”