Mid Sussex councillors’ basic allowances set to rise

Mid Sussex District Council. Pic Steve Robards SR1521483 SUS-150809-224944001
Mid Sussex District Council. Pic Steve Robards SR1521483 SUS-150809-224944001

A rise in allowances paid to Mid Sussex district councillors could be agreed next week.

Currently the basic allowance for all councillors is £4,501 a year and this is recommended to increase by 2.5 per cent per annum over the next four years, initially rising to £4,620 for 2016/17.

The Independent Remuneration Panel’s report, due to be discussed by Full Council next Wednesday December 16, noted that councillors felt that allowances had been frozen for long enough and a rise would compensate for the five per cent cut in 2011/12.

It read: “The panel also acknowledged some concerns raised by councillors that the basic allowance needed to be sustainable and attractive enough to encourage more diverse and higher calibre of people to become elected councillors.

“The panel noted that they had recommended modest incremental increases in recent years which had been rejected, with the result that there has been no increase in the basic allowance since 2011/12, whilst costs have continued to rise throughout this time.”

The report also suggests a new allowance be created for planning committee vice-chairman of £1,150 each, while allowances for planning committee chairmen should also rise by 2.5 per cent a year.

If all the panel’s recommendations are agreed it would result in a £9,731 increase in the total member allowances budget for 2016/17.

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