East Cambs councillors could get a pay rise from next April once an independent panel makes a recommendation

East Cambs councillors may get a rise from April

East Cambs councillors may get a rise from April - Credit: Archant

They’ve not had a pay rise since 2013 but councillors in East Cambs could finally get an increase on their basic £4,261 a year from next April.

The corporate governance and finance committee agreed to spend £5,000 to set up an Independent Remuneration Panel (IRP) to review members’ allowances.

Five lay people will be asked to work throughout the autumn and winter with a view to making a recommendation to be implemented from April.

Councillors were told that Government regulations insist on four yearly reviews and agreed the IRP chairman would receive £650 and panel members would each get £550 “to reflect past practice and the level of work required”.

Each councillor will be sent a questionnaire to “assist in its assessment of the time commitments/ responsibilities” of backbench councillors and those holding senior posts who receive Special Responsibility Allowances (SRAs).

The £5,000 set aside for the review will include advertising and recruitment costs and officer time. The money will come from “under spends elsewhere in the current year revenue budget”.

The council currently gives SRAs for a range of duties, with five committee chairmen each receiving an additional £2,568 a year. Four vice chairmen receive an extra £642.

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Two other committee chairmen get an extra £1,744 a year – the same sum paid to the deputy leader of the council, the leader of the Conservative group and the leader of the Lib Dems. Additionally the leader of the council receives £5,139 extra and the leader of the independent group gets £379.

Tories dominate the council with 36 members; there are two Lib Dems and one independent.

The members’ allowances scheme also allows for group spokesmen for the Lib Dems to be paid £257 for sitting on policy committees and planning.

The council chairman receives £3,631 a year extra whilst the vice chairman is paid an extra £971.

Councillors also get 45p a mileage allowance for cars dropping to 5p per mile if they cycle on official business.