Brent councillors receive �1,194 every time they chair a community forum

Outrage over �4,777 allowance to host four meeetings a year

Councillors who chair the borough’s quarterly area consultative forums get an allowance of �4,777 – that’s nearly �1,200 per meeting.

Each year there are four meetings in five areas around the borough where residents can have a say about the issues which matter to them.

But campaigners say councillors should have these allowances cut at a time when the council is being forced to make �100 million in savings over four years which means closing libraries, day care centres for the disabled and axing jobs.

Gaynor Lloyd, a library campaigner who obtained the figures through a Freedom of Information request, said: “We are always being told these are unprecedented times which need drastic cuts.

“The members’ basic allowance may be less than the London average but when constituents are suffering slashes in their desperately needed services, I can’t see there is any justifying some of those ‘extra’ earnings.”

Councillors’ basic allowance is �7,974 but an Executive member getsan extra �14,969 on top while the chair of the planning committee gets an extra �13,208.

Most Read

Cllr Ann John OBE,leader of Brent Council, gets a total allowance of �43,196.

Sarah Cox, spokeswoman for anti-cuts campaign group Brent Fightback, said: “It has to be justified and if the council does justify it then it needs to be challenged.

“It seems a bit excessive. The allowance an area consultative forum chair gets for one meeting is the same as some people earn in a month.”

But Cllr John said the area consultative forum chairpersons are important positions. She said: “Brent’s allowances scheme is less than other London boroughs. The chairpersons do not just chair four meetings.

“There is a lot of preparation work and liaising with officers and steering groups with residents.

“It is a very important position and a key way of speaking to residents.”

The five chairs of the borough’s Area Consulatitve Forums are:

Cllr James Denselow – Kilburn and Kensal

Cllr Krupesh Hirani – Willesden

Cllr Wilhelmina Mitchell-Murray – Wembley

Cllr Kanapathipillai Naheerathan – Kingsbury and Kenton

Cllr Bobby Thomas - Harlesden