Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Independent panel resigns in protest at Conservative councillors' allowances

Council Leader, David Hodge
All three members of Surrey County Council's Independent Remuneration Panel have resigned in protest at Conservative councillors rewarding themselves with huge pay rises.

The IRP makes recommendations on councillors' allowances, including Special Responsibility Allowances which are paid to those councillors who are expected to do more than the average councillor because of a specific role. Surrey's IRP made a number of recommendations on SRAs which the ruling Conservatives largely ignored, including:
  • Increasing the Leader of the Council's allowance from £27k to £43k when the IRP only recommended an increase to £35,548
  • Increasing the Deputy Leader's allowance from £19,500 to £31,250 when the IRP only recommended an increase to £30,333
  • Implementing the pay increases immediately rather than phasing them in over a period of time
The Chairman of the IRP, Cathy Rollison, said:
This flagrant disregard for the carefully considered recommendations of its own IRP has left us with no alternative but to resign.

Like most members of the public, we do not believe that it is right for councillors to award themselves pay rises, against the advice of an independent panel.