Money For Nothing
PRESS RELEASE – 6th February 2011
Leader of the Opposition at Surrey Heath BC
“Surrey Heath Tories pocket over £5500 of public money for doing nothing”
Research undertaken by the Leader of the Opposition has shown that 4 Conservative councillors at Surrey Heath Borough Council are receiving £1380 each from taxpayers for non-existent work. The Councillors all act in the so-called role of “Vice-chairmen” for one of the four Scrutiny Committees. However, records show they have failed to actually chair a single meeting between them so far this municipal year.
In a further revelation, Cllr Chris Pitt has failed to even attend 4 of the 5 meetings of the Policy and Audit Scrutiny Committee that have taken place to date even though he is entitled to £1380 as the Vice Chair.
Cllr Rodney Bates, Leader of the Opposition said, “Most councillors across all political parties work very hard for their local community and for any allowances that they receive. However, residents rightly get very angry when they hear about people getting this type of undeserved bonus, paid by their Council tax.”
He adds, “In this case, the Council already pays other people to act as Chairmen for Scrutiny Committees and these people receive a very generous extra allowance of £3456 a year. This works out at between £494 and £864 for chairing just one Committee meeting. This is a similar amount to what many families in my area would pay for a well-earned holiday. It is an appalling waste of money that the Council should pay a Vice Chair on top earning up to £345 a meeting. We now know these people are either sitting there doing nothing or not even turning up in the first place. I therefore call upon the 4 Tory councillors to return their £1380 allowances so the money can be put towards more deserving Council services instead.”
1) The 4 Scrutiny Committees at Surrey Heath BC are Community, External Partnerships, Leisure and Environment and finally, Policy and Audit.
2) The Community Scrutiny Committee has 4 planned meetings in 2011/12. The chair is Cllr Audrey Roxburgh and vice-chair is Cllr Wynne Price.
3) The External Partnerships Scrutiny Committee has 7 planned meetings (including a special one in Feb). The Chair is Cllr Josephine Hawkins and vice-chair is Cllr David Hamilton.
4) The Leisure and Environment Scrutiny Committee has 5 planned meetings. The chair is Cllr Ian Sams and the vice-chair is Cllr Ian Cullen.
5) The Policy and Audit Scrutiny Committee has 6 planned meetings. The chair is Cllr Edward Hawkins and the vice-chair is Cllr Chris Pitt. The only meeting Cllr Pitt has attended so far was on 28th Sept.
6) Attendance lists and minutes can be found on the Surrey Heath web-site (http://www.surreyheath.gov.uk/council/committees/list.htm) The member allowance payments can be found in part 6 of the constitution (http://www.surreyheath.gov.uk/council/constitution/default.htm)
Contact: Cllr Rodney Bates – 01276 679957 or mobile 07531 370490
What A Waste Of Money!
"£1380 please and don't expect me to do anything for it!"
"It's only taxpayers' money. I'll have some too."
"Me too, ha ha ha!"
"I want the money and I can't even be bothered to turn up to meetings. Suckers!"