At the first meeting of Cotswold District Council the newly elected Liberal Democrats party have awarded themselves an inflation busting 25% pay-rise.
Cotswold District Council changed hands on 2 May 2019 and the Liberal Democrats took control of the council. However, the only item on the agenda at the annual meeting and first meeting of the newly formed council was to bring forward a review of members allowances and increase them by a whopping 25%.
All 18 Lib Dems voted for the increase, as well as the newly elected Green Party representative and the council’s new Independent representative for Tetbury. All of the councils 14 Conservative party members voted against the increase.
The increase will cost council tax payers an extra £55,000 which equates to over 1% of annual council tax revenues.
Cllr Tony Berry (Kemble), leader of the Conservative Group said, “We were unable to support the Lib Dems in putting up councillors’ allowances. Our magnificent officers have only had a 14% increase over the last ten years, so it was impossible to justify the huge 25% increase at the first meeting of this new council”.
Deputy leader of the Conservative Cllr Group Richard Morgan (Grumbolds Ash with Avening) said “I cannot believe this was the first item of the Lib Dems agenda. For years they have been challenging us on issues like social housing and social mobility but their first priority at their first meeting was to award themselves a 25% pay increase”.