Wokingham Conservative Councillors’ Pay trumps Public Services

Last night the Conservatives decided to pay Wokingham Borough Councillors who are Non Executive Directors on the three council owned companies an extra £6095 a year each. This was despite the Lib Dems asking them not to make this decision and at the very least bring it to a full Council Meeting so that a more democratic and representative decision could be made.

Yet the Conservatives refused to take this opportunity, preferring to vote through this pay increase. Cllr Tom McCann, Loddon ward, said “The decision has been taken by a tiny minority of councillors; this money could be used to fund services that have been cut like public toilets or grass cutting. These Tory councillors appear to value themselves more than public services.

The Lib Dems think it is a disgrace that Conservatives are putting their own pay first. We asked the Executive not to make this decision and were ignored. We will challenge their decision and want to see it overturned.”

NOTE:

The full question was:

“According to Item 51.00 Approval of Directors Remuneration all councillors appointed as non Executive directors of the council’s trading companies are to receive payment of £6095 a year in future. These non executive directors are appointed via TESC, a sub committee of the Executive, and the decision to pay them is also being taken by the Executive. No formal process exists for nominating and selecting councillors as non executive directors. All other appointments to outside bodies and remunerated representative roles are made by full council. Full council also votes on all other aspects of remuneration for councillors. Remuneration for this year was agreed by Council on 19th July, following the report of the Independent Remuneration Panel. No mention was made of any payments to councillors who are directors of companies at that meeting, which was only a week ago.

“Why are the normal processes for appointments and remuneration not being followed in the case of councillors appointed as directors of council-owned limited companies?”

Published by Woodley & Whitegates Liberal Democrats, 26 Farriers Close Woodley, Reading RG5 3DD.

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