Lancashire TelegraphLancashire councillors are divided over allowance levels (From Lancashire Telegraph)

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Lancashire councillors are divided over allowance levels

CLAIMS that low pay puts people off becoming a local councillor have divided East Lancashire politicians.

A report by MPs said councillors had a right to an ‘appropriate level of compensation’.

Labour local government committee chairman Clive Betts said the young should be encouraged to stand for councils but could be put off for financial reasons.

But Tory chairman Grant Shapps' claimed the conclusions were in Labour’s interests because its councillors pass on cash to the party.

And Pendle Tory MP Andrew Stephenson said local councillors were paid enough.

Blackburn with Darwen’s resources boss Andy Kay felt that low allowances, problems with gett- ing time off work and loss-of earnings deterred working people from standing for their local council.

Liberal Democrat peer and Pendle councillor Tony Greaves said it was the wrong time to increase politicians payments with the country in recession.

The report said many younger people were reluctant to stand in local elections, with the average age of a councillor at about 60.

In East Lancashire payments vary with borough councillors in Ribble Valley getting £2,844 a year and Burnley £2,700, while Blackburn with Darwen’s receive £5,392 and Lancashire county’s £10,000.

Burnley council leader Julie Cooper receives £17,550 a year, Ribble Valley boss Michael Ranson £17,000 and Blackburn with Darwen’s Kate Hollern £22,700.

Lancashire County council’s Tory leader Geoff Driver receives £39,000 annually.

Lord Greaves said: “We have kept our payments low in Pendle. I get about £3,000 and make some payment to the Liberal Democrat Party. I don’t think now is the time to increase councillors allowances. I don’t think anyone becomes a councillor for the pay.”

Coun Kay said: “I think councillors allowances are low, but the problem is people in work who have trouble getting time off and loss of earnings if they become councillors.

“From memory, I think the biggest allowances are often paid by Tory councils.

“I do pay money to the party.”

Mr Stephenson said: “I think councillors get enough especially in some of the big metropolitan authorities like Salford and Manchester.

Thankfully, Pendle and Ribble Valley have kept the allowances low.”

Comments (5)

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7:25pm Fri 11 Jan 13

pip-pip says...

A thorny subject. However, something that should be discussed openly. Remember the recent expenses scandal all,originated with a 'pay freeze ' followed by a 'make up the shortfall with expenses '.
Our councillors/MPs should be paid a fair amount. Their reasonable and necessary expenses to do the job should be paid.
However, using the expenses to fund your party is not on. If you can afford to give it away, you don't need it.
So, I would suggest a decent salary ( perhaps pegged to suitable civil service grade) necessary expenses and tax funded political parties with the parties not allowed to accept money from any other sources.
A thorny subject. However, something that should be discussed openly. Remember the recent expenses scandal all,originated with a 'pay freeze ' followed by a 'make up the shortfall with expenses '. Our councillors/MPs should be paid a fair amount. Their reasonable and necessary expenses to do the job should be paid. However, using the expenses to fund your party is not on. If you can afford to give it away, you don't need it. So, I would suggest a decent salary ( perhaps pegged to suitable civil service grade) necessary expenses and tax funded political parties with the parties not allowed to accept money from any other sources. pip-pip
  • Score: 0

7:30pm Fri 11 Jan 13

rilistic says...

Totally agree it should NOT be used to fund political parties.
Totally agree it should NOT be used to fund political parties. rilistic
  • Score: 0

9:16pm Fri 11 Jan 13

mavrick says...

pip-pip wrote:
A thorny subject. However, something that should be discussed openly. Remember the recent expenses scandal all,originated with a 'pay freeze ' followed by a 'make up the shortfall with expenses '.
Our councillors/MPs should be paid a fair amount. Their reasonable and necessary expenses to do the job should be paid.
However, using the expenses to fund your party is not on. If you can afford to give it away, you don't need it.
So, I would suggest a decent salary ( perhaps pegged to suitable civil service grade) necessary expenses and tax funded political parties with the parties not allowed to accept money from any other sources.
Well said pip pip, it is time we had the debate, If we want democracy then nobody should be excluded from an election.
[quote][p][bold]pip-pip[/bold] wrote: A thorny subject. However, something that should be discussed openly. Remember the recent expenses scandal all,originated with a 'pay freeze ' followed by a 'make up the shortfall with expenses '. Our councillors/MPs should be paid a fair amount. Their reasonable and necessary expenses to do the job should be paid. However, using the expenses to fund your party is not on. If you can afford to give it away, you don't need it. So, I would suggest a decent salary ( perhaps pegged to suitable civil service grade) necessary expenses and tax funded political parties with the parties not allowed to accept money from any other sources.[/p][/quote]Well said pip pip, it is time we had the debate, If we want democracy then nobody should be excluded from an election. mavrick
  • Score: 0

2:45pm Sat 12 Jan 13

frank says...

fully agree , they can't complain about low pay if they can afford to give it away.
fully agree , they can't complain about low pay if they can afford to give it away. frank
  • Score: 0

9:44am Sun 13 Jan 13

Izanears says...

Lord Greaves said: “We have kept our payments low in Pendle. I get about £3,000 and make some payment to the Liberal Democrat Party. I don’t think now is the time to increase councillors allowances. I don’t think anyone becomes a councillor for the pay.”
What Lord Greaves has not said id how much he gets when he goes to the House of Lords. If memory serves me right it is a least £300 a day.
By the way, Councillor John David does not take one penny in expenses. If he can do it, why can't the others?
Lord Greaves said: “We have kept our payments low in Pendle. I get about £3,000 and make some payment to the Liberal Democrat Party. I don’t think now is the time to increase councillors allowances. I don’t think anyone becomes a councillor for the pay.” What Lord Greaves has not said id how much he gets when he goes to the House of Lords. If memory serves me right it is a least £300 a day. By the way, Councillor John David does not take one penny in expenses. If he can do it, why can't the others? Izanears
  • Score: 0

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