Raising mileage rates for Fenland councillors would send out wrong message, says leader Melton

Councillor Roger Green claims members of Fenland District Council are worse off now than four years ago but Council Leader Alan Melton says members must lead by example.

Allowances are set by an independent remuneration committee and Cllr Green has said he wants assurances that when it next meets it should look at mileage allowances which currently stand at 40p per mile.

Cllr Green says in the last four years councillors have had a rise in allowances of just �152 - �38 a year or 73p a week which has been more than swallowed up by increases in fuel prices. He said: “In that time petrol has gone up significantly by about 28p a litre and I think the committee should look at this when they next meet.”

Cllr Melton whose recommendation of making no changes, goes before councillors tomorrow said members had to be careful about the message they were sending out. He said: “I do have some sympathy over the petrol at 40p a mile because this has not been altered despite the price going up but members who wish to raise the mileage rate should realise that anything over and above 40p is subject to taxation.

“I decided what my recommendation would be in view of the current economic climate. Everyone working in the public sector, including our staff, are expected to make sacrifices. If we were to suddenly raise the rate for mileage it would send out the wrong message to the general public.”

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