At the meeting of the Covid Emergency Committee yesterday afternoon I spoke as a Chair of a cancelled Committee asking that all the Chairs and Vice Chairs of cancelled Committees if they would allow their additional payments for their extra responsibilities to be frozen from 1st June. This money could then be allocated back into the cash strapped Council. As none of the Committees have met since late March they are not doing the job so they should not get paid.
Two Committees have to continue, Planning and Licensing, so I will leave it to the discretion of those Chairs whether they wish to continue to avail themselves of the Special Responsibility Allowance.
I am not asking the Councillors to give up their basic allowance, which every Councillor receives, as all councillors are engaged in work in their communities, it is the extra allowance paid to the Chairs and Vice Chairs to run Committees which have not met since late March.
One Tory Councillor from Herne Bay made it very clear in a briefing for Councillors on Wednesday that if local contractors were not doing their job they should not be paid. Yet every Tory Councillor on the Covid Emergency Committee voted to keep the Special Responsibility Allowance for a job they are not doing. Local residents are feeling the effect of the pandemic and look to this Tory led Council to set an example but I am sorry to say that once again they have shown their true colours.
Can they say we are all in this together? I DON’T THINK SO
Councillor Jean Butcher, Northgate Ward (Labour)