Times letters: Council pay rises and local election

Brent council election count. Picture: KEN MEARS

Brent council election count. Picture: KEN MEARS - Credit: Archant

Letters, contributions and comments sent in from Times’ readers this week.

Pay increase is tactless

Trevor Ellis, Chalk Hill Road, Wembley, writes:

I think it is extremely tactless for Brent councillors to award themselves a 17.6 per cent pay rise so soon after last week’s local election.

It is also inconsiderate to the feelings of residents that enabled the Labour cabinet to remain in control of the council for another four years. I’m not a Labour supporter but, if I was, I would be feeling pretty miffed.

Cllr Butt went to great lengths to make his cabinet look like the victim of the supposedly tight fisted Tory government prior to the election. I, however, beg to differ. Even if the Tory cuts to funding made it difficult for the council to keep essential services going, they were still able to find an extra £1,800 to put in their pay packet.

I wonder how residents feel now they have to pay £73 council tax each month while councillors get a pay rise? It’s not fair and it wouldn’t surprise me at all if they turn their backs on the Labour cabinet at the next local election.

• Editor’s note: as we made clear in last week’s paper, Brent Labour claims the pay rise will be paid for by cuts to special responsibility allowances – effectively a redistribution of wealth around the chamber. But final figures have yet to be published because it hasn’t been decided how many councillors will end up holding those special positions

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We will take back Brondesbury

Cllr Reg Colwill, Brent opposition leader. writes:

Labour swept to power again taking most of Brent, except for the Kenton Ward which enabled myself, Cllr Suresh Kansagra and Cllr Michael Maurice to continue their work in Kenton with an increased majority.

I must say how sad we were to hear that Carol Shaw had lost her seat. She was a very good ward councillor who always worked hard for residents and we wish her well in her fight for recovery.

We will take back the Brondesbury Ward.