A Letter to the Editor from NYCC and SBC Councillor Tony RANDERSON [Lab.] condemning another unjustifiable rise in County Councillors’ Allowances. Conservatives deftly circumnavigate their own ‘austerity’ policy when it comes to granting themselves a pay rise.
North Yorkshire County Councillors’ Allowances
At the next County Council Meeting on 16th May, Agenda Item 8 is Members’ Allowance Scheme.
The Independent Panel make a recommendation to increase Members Basic Allowances and Special Responsibility Allowances by a whopping 4.5%. This would bring the North Yorkshire County Councillors Basic Allowance to £9,635.
This Independent Panel make out there is a valid argument for a further increase on top of the increase awarded to North Yorkshire County Councillors only last year.
They say this is to attract the required calibre of candidate who wish to put themselves forward for election to public office. Do they really believe prospective Councillors put themselves forward for the money, certainly I didn’t give that a thought.
They also state that North Yorkshire is way down the league at 14th out of 16 County Councils when it comes to the remuneration for County Councillors, and is still nearly 10% below the average of the comparator group.
This Panel also says this increase is necessary to recognise the commitment of County Councillors and to compensate them for any expenses incurred as a County Councillor. All this stated by the Remuneration Panel.
I will be speaking against this immoral increase and most definitely voting against it, as indeed I did last year when this was voted in by the vast majority of Tory County Councillors.
I will be insisting that once again any increase (if, as I believe, this recommendation will be accepted) will go directly to the charity of my choice, which is the Scarborough Children’s Charity The Little Foot Trust of which I am a Trustee.
I will be undertaking to tempt other County Councillors to vote against this increase because I really do view it as immoral to accept such an increase when those we serve, our residents have been having such a difficult period of time over a number of years due to the Austerity measures foisted upon us by this Conservative Government.
Where even front-line services are being decimated, road repairs virtually non-existent, bins overflowing with rubbish, street lights being turned off and schools under-funded, to name but a few, how could I possibly look any resident in the eye when I know they are struggling on valiantly on zero-hours contracts, agency working and living in the low paid capital of Britain by accepting ANY increase to my basic allowance, never mind 4.5%.
My conscience will not allow me to even contemplate this.
I live in the hope that there are enough Tory County Councillors that will agree with me. However, I am not holding my breath.
Labour County CouncillorEastfield & Osgodby Division
Mob 07926 226904