Time to make Lib Dems’ position clear regarding Fenland councillors’ allowance increase
FURTHER to recent comments regarding increases to councillors allowances, I wanted to make it clear the position that the Lib Dems have taken on Fenland District Council.
We voted against the increases to the allowances as we believe it is not right or ethical at this time.
The Conservatives (no opposition councillors voted in favour) who voted to increase the allowance with minimal debate on their part are wrong for a number of reasons.
It demonstrates a lack of leadership, as elected representatives it is their duty to lead by example.
I have argued that increases to allowances should be linked to the same percentage increase that council workers receive annually. This would avoid the situation where councillors vote to increase their own pay and introduce a more gradual system of increasing allowances.
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The current system is flawed and needs overhauling.
There has also been the debate that we need a more diverse representation of councillors to represent the community by making the allowances more appealing to potential candidates.
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I agree we need wider representation, but this can best be achieved by changing the times of council meetings to late afternoon/early evening, so those who work have a better chance of being giving the time by their employer to attend.
CLLR GAVIN BOOTH
Leader, Liberal Democrat Group