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Surrey's Conservative Councillors award themselves a pay rise but promise huge cuts to County Council services

May 24, 2018 3:10 PM
Originally published by Surrey County Council Lib Dems

County HallLiberal Democrat County Councillors in Surrey have heavily criticised the Conservative-administration at County Hall after Conservative Councillors awarded themselves thousands of pounds of extra allowances in a vote at Council yesterday. The vote means that 4 new Deputy Cabinet positions will be created, at a cost of £40K a year, as well as extra allowances for committee vice-chairs. Liberal Democrat County Councillors opposed these increases and voted against them at County Hall.

Cllr Chris Botten, Leader of the Liberal Democrats at Surrey County Council, said:

"At a time when residents are looking to Surrey County Council to increase its cost effectiveness, and at a time when severe cuts in services are proposed, the Conservatives should not be looking to award themselves a pay rise. Many of our residents have had no real increase in their income for ten years and they will be appalled to see these increases voted through. The overall cost of allowances for members should be capped for three years and any adjustments made by moving money within the existing budget."


Cllr Fiona White, Deputy Leader of the Liberal Democrats at Surrey County Council, added:

"I told the Leader of the Council yesterday how I disappointed I was with his proposals to pay thousands of pounds of additional allowances to Conservative Councillors, whilst at the same time proposing huge cuts to essential services. The County Council is telling residents that difficult decisions need to be made on spending but at the same time is able to find extra money to keep backbench Conservative councillors happy. I am calling for the Conservative-administration to reverse this decision and instead put this money into front line services."

NOTES

A webcast of the meeting can be found here (with the Item on allowances starting at 1:39:00):

https://surreycc.public-i.tv/core/portal/webcast_interactive/352601

A copy of the Leader's response to the Independent Remuneration Panel report can be found here:

http://scc.lib.dm/d2R1

The Council papers for this item can be found here (Item 15):

https://mycouncil.surreycc.gov.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=121&MId=5841&Ver=4