Why is it being back dated?

WITH reference to your front page disclosure regarding the pay rises for councillors' expenses I can only express my horror at such enormous increases. I have done some quick

WITH reference to your front page disclosure regarding the pay rises for councillors' expenses I can only express my horror at such enormous increases.I have done some quick calculations and the leader will have an increase of 55 per cent in his expenses, the deputy leader 41 per cent, executive members 44 per cent, councillors 25 per cent, and I thought the inflation rate was 2.5 per cent. These councillors have only been in office since last May. The reason given for these huge increases is that we are not in line with other councils in the South West. It does not say if we are comparable in size and budget, etc., to these other councils. If voted through it will mean the residents of North Somerset will have to find more than £800,000 to pay these costs, not to council employees, but councillors who already have main employment and take on the job of councillor because of their interest in helping the local residents of North Somerset and making it a better place. I always thought it was a voluntary position. Also, why is it being back dated? They knew when they took the job last May what the expenses would be and obviously were quite satisfied, so why are these very same people now considering increasing their own allowances, when the council is reducing the number of its employees to save costs. And how come they are going to be able to join the North Somerset employee pension scheme, which already costs us, every person, £47 a year. Imagine how much more we will have to pay if 61 councillors are permitted to join. It takes courage to stand up against bad decisions but I implore the residents of North Somerset to write a card to your councillor, and the leader of the council, and say no to councillor increases and pensions, then maybe the cuts to special needs children, transport, health care for the elderly, schools, libraries, etc., will be saved. At least we will have saved almost £1million being wasted. Alternatively, you can always e-mail your councillor - the address is on the council website. PEARL COLLMAN - Via email


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