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15% pay rise for KCC councillors set to cost the taxpayer almost £245,000

PUBLISHED: 15:12 17 July 2017

County Hall

County Hall

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Council leader Paul Carter will see his allowance soar by more than £6,000

A controversial 15 per cent hike in allowances for Kent county councillors is set to cost the taxpayer almost £245,000.

Members controversially overruled a recommendation by Kent County Council’s member remuneration panel of a 1.5 per cent rise last week, insisting they were deserving of a more substantial increase.

The proposed formula would have seen members pick up £13,000 compared to £12,805, however some 48 councillors voted in favour of a staggering 15 per cent hike, meaning the basic allowance will be £14,725.

Additionally, council leader, Paul Carter will see his pay packet soar from £42,109 to £48,425, while ten cabinet members will receive an increase from £27,370 to £31,475.50.

There are also substantial raises for roles including deputy cabinet members and committee chairs, bringing the potential bill to £244,712.

Opposition members branded the increase “disgraceful” and “preposterous”, in a move which even saw Conservative councillor Jeremy Kite vote against his own party.

Defending the hike last week, Cllr Carter said: “Why should we have to tolerate a freeze on the allowances that were set in 2008?

“It hasn’t reflected the cost of living increases and pay increases that everybody else has had, except us.”

Among 70 votes at County Hall last Thursday, 48 were in favour, 13 were against and nine abstained.

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