Councillors are a good bargain

The basic allowances given to councillors on High Peak Borough Council are among the lowest in the country, new research has revealed.

The Taxpayers Alliance has highlighted a huge disparity between similar sized councils across the country

The Alliance said that while many councillors receive modest allowances entirely appropriate for a role representing their local community, in some authorities, rising pay and even pensions suggest councillors were increasingly being treated as professional politicians.

High Peak members receive a basic allowance of £3,002, the 15th lowest nationally and the lowest in Derbyshire. The highest in the county is Bolsover whose members receive a basic allowance of £9,902.44.

Leader of High Peak Borough Council Caitlin Bisknell said: “It comes as no surprise. We have certainly known for some time, and certainly the councillors across all parties realise, we are not particularly well remunerated on the borough council. But given the current financial climate I don’t think it is right to look to increase our allowance.”

All county and district councillors are entitled to a basic allowance which is set locally following advice from independent panels. They can also claim for mileage and subsistence.

In addition, members with cabinet positions are entitled to receive a special responsibility allowance.

Cllr Bisknell said it did seem a bit ridiculous that some back bench members received almost the same as a council leader.

“There does need to be more parity,” she added.