Kent Messenger Maidstone

Chauf­feur ser­vice costs re­vealed

- London · Jimmy Carter

Al­most £27,000 was spent on a chauf­feur­ing ser­vice for county coun­cil­lors last year, ac­cord­ing to a KCC re­port. Coun­cil­lors on of­fi­cial busi­ness, in­clud­ing the chairman, leader and op­po­si­tion lead­ers are all en­ti­tled to the hire ser­vice. Cllr Martin Why­brow (Green) claims the coun­cil is too “car cen­tric” and more should be done to pro­mote pub­lic trans­port. Leader Paul Carter was picked up at 6.15am last Wed­nes­day at home for meet­ings with an MP, County Coun­cils Net­work and a ra­dio and news­pa­per in­ter­view. Dur­ing the jour­ney to Lon­don, he took a con­fer­ence call and caught up on pa­per­work. Mr Carter said: “I work all the way up and all the way down in the car, which you could not do on the train. “Also when you look at those costs they have gone down quite sub­stan­tially in the last year. “We have a cou­ple of clapped out Volvos that have done more than 200,000 miles, which haven’t thank­fully had too many re­pair bills, there­fore we are run­ning a pretty lean, mean or­gan­i­sa­tion. “Wher­ever pos­si­ble we car share, some­times there are two of­fi­cers trav­el­ling with me, which is cheaper than get­ting a rail ticket.” The coun­cil­lor in charge of pub­lic trans­port, Mike Whit­ing, made no claims for train or bus tick­ets last year.

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