Norfolk councillors who will decide on allowances hike u-turn got £1m last year
- Credit: Norfolk Conservatives/submitted/
The councillors who will vote on whether or not to go ahead with a controversial increase in allowances, received more than £1m last year, figures have revealed.
Fifty of the 84 Norfolk county councillors are twin-hatters, serving both at County Hall and on a borough, district or city council, so are able to claim allowances from both authorities.
The 30 of those who were twin-hatters last year received more than £630,000 in allowances.
Adding on the current councillors who were on a district, borough or city council last year, who have since been elected to County Hall, the total was £1.03m.
Councillors do not get a salary, but receive allowances in recognition of their work, with extra for those with special responsibilities, such as leader of the council or committee chair.
You may also want to watch:
They can also claim for travel, subsistence and broadband.
Before Christmas, Norfolk county councillors voted, by 39 votes to 26 with two abstentions, to increase their basic allowance from £9,401 to £10,500 a year.
- 1 Air ambulance called and A47 closed after incident
- 2 Major Lowestoft road partially closed due to police incident
- 3 Why this Norfolk village is one of the best in the UK
- 4 'I couldn't believe my eyes' - snorkeller finds 125-year-old shipwreck
- 5 Man airlifted to hospital with serious head injuries after fight near pub
- 6 Shed set alight, 16 broken into and pumpkins destroyed at allotments
- 7 Pedestrian suffers life-threatening injuries in A47 crash
- 8 Do you recognise this man?
- 9 'Very calculated predator' - how jailed abuser befriended pupils' families
- 10 A47 set for two weeks of roadworks from Monday
That was despite an independent panel recommending basic allowance should stay at the current level, bar any percentage increase local authority staff get,
The panel accepted there was a need for a 'fundamental review', with allowances lower than in neighbouring counties, but recommended any changes should happen next year.
They highlighted the need to be 'mindful', given the council has been consulting over 'significant budgetary reductions'.
But Conservative leader Cliff Jordan went against the recommendation and proposed the basic allowance increase. He also recommended his special responsibility allowance as leader should go up to £31,700 from £27,495, although he subsequently said he would donate his increase to charity.
He also recommended the chairs of adult social care and children's services committee get an increase of £13,747 to £15,809. The independent panel had said that should go up.
The increases will see £142,000 shared among county councillors, from an underspend in the allowances budget.
But Labour and the Liberal Democrats voted against and have forced a special meeting of Norfolk County Council on Monday, where a motion will be put forward to rescind the decision to hike the allowances.