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How I’m giving back my pay rise

by Steff on 17 January, 2018

Before Christmas, whilst wielding an axe to public services including mobile libraries, bus subsidies and even road gritting (all of which we’re campaigning hard against), the County Council voted to increase Members’ allowances. You couldn’t make it up: politicians giving themselves an extra £142,000 a year, whilst cutting more than twice that from each of the above services.

I know that many councillors – even conservative members – work hard. But we knew what we were in for when we stood, and if arguments about “attracting more people into politics” are valid, they should be made closer to the next election, not just after the one where we all stood knowing what we’d get.

In spite of this, all the Liberal Democrat and Labour members voted against the increase, and we even called an Extraordinary Meeting of the Council on 8th January to try and overturn the decision. But the governing Conservative administration sent just enough people along to defeat us. This follows a worrying pattern that’s emerging across East Anglia, of Tory administrations getting into power and then increasing their own pay.

Rather then refusing the increase, where I have no power to direct how it’s spent instead, I will be using the additional money I will be receiving, after tax, to create a seed funding pot for community projects across the division. Anyone who lives or works in Melton Constable division can apply for funding, and I will consider all proposals. Once I get my January pay check, I’ll publish the amount available on here, and how much has been spent as I go.

** Update. Our January pay cheques were processed as normal. But today (24/1) we have had a second pay cheque representing the additional members’ allowances backdated to May last year. Having worked out my National Insurance and tax deductions, the starting position for my community slush fund is £522.29. Get in touch and apply with any ideas you have that need seed funding, and could benefit the local community in Melton Constable Division! **

Allocated so far:
£18 – Mulled Wine to encourage local people to come to a meeting at Melton Constable Country Club to discuss its future
£8 – Two Land Registry searches to assist local Parish Council matters (as the County Council can no longer offer this for free)
£100 – Contribution towards assessing options for reducing the speed limit through the B1110 in Briningham

   2 Comments

2 Responses

  1. Liz Goldfinger says:

    No one seems able to tell us/me what has happened to our weekly Post office in Hindolveston – I’m fed up going on my mobility scooter on Wednesdays at the one hour slot at 11.something (I’ve forgotton the exact time now as I have given up) but it’s not much fun if it’s raining and not much of a service!

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