A proposal to save council taxpayers £21,400 a year (from allowances for senior Essex Conservatives) has been rejected by the Conservatives at County Hall.
At today's meeting of Essex County Council the Liberal Democrat Opposition Group proposed deleting the Special Allowance for the Deputy Leader of the Conservative Group. Cllr. Stephen Robinson (Chelmsford North), proposing the amendment, said:
"This post and allowance is just not required. The (separate) Conservative Deputy Leader of the Council receives £40,000, eight Cabinet members £35,000 and the Deputy Cabinet members £13,000 each. The Conservative group must recognise that they lost one third of their Councillors in the election and don't need this extra allowance."
The Liberal Democrat proposal was supported by Labour, Independent and Green councillors; UKIP abstained, and the Conservative majority voted it down.
Leader of the Liberal Democrat Opposition Group, Mike Mackrory, commented:
"The Conservatives have 56% of the Councillors but have rewarded themselves with 97% of the allowances. This is quite outrageous."
NB The Leaders of the three main opposition groups each receive £5350. Their deputy leaders do not receive any allowance.