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Blackpool Councillors to get expenses increase

Just under an additional £100,000 will be paid out to councillors by Blackpool Council following the latest review of it members allowances scheme.

Changes will see council leader Coun Simon Blackburn’s allowance increase from £28,655 to £30,600, while payment to his deputies Coun Gillian Campbell and Coun Graham Cain will go up from £17,193 to £18,360.

Main opposition leader Coun Tony Williams  and cabinet members will receive £13,770, up from £12,894.

The basic allowance will go up to £10,200 from £9,551, and payments in relation to other responsibilities such as committee chairmen will also increase.

Currently £807,343 is spent on councillors’ allowances, a total which will increase by £71,460 for existing positions plus £25,770 for new positions – a total of £97,230.

The figures, which were agreed unanimously by councillors at a meeting of the full council, were recommended by the Independent Remuneration Panel which carries out a review every four years.

In its report, the panel said it based its calculations on the Living Wage Foundation with increases reflecting the increases in the Living Wage.

Councillors work on average 25 hours per week, according to responses from a survey of members in 2013.

Council leader Coun Simon Blackburn said: “In common with every other council in the country, and in line with the law, once every four years, a group of three independent people advise the council on councillors allowances.

“I am pleased that all councillors present at the meeting, Labour, Conservative and both Independent groups, unanimously endorsed this report.  A further report will be brought in June 2023.”

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