68% pay rise for the Conservative Cabinet, 1% pay rise for Council Employees
Labour Councillors voted against the Conservative Council's pay policy on 20th March. This locks hardworking Council employees into a 1% salary increase while the Tory Council’s cabinet trousers 68% pay rises. It's outrageous.
We've called for a review of this pay policy with comparison against other Councils to make sure no employees are working below the living wage and that all staff are paid correctly for their role.
Our Council needs to attract and keep the best staff to provide the best services for our residents.
Local Conservative Budget - a raw deal for residents
Cllr Max Holloway wrote to John Dean, Leader of the Council asking him to reconsider his stance on protesting the unfair funding restrictions being imposed on Welwyn Hatfield by the Chancellor, especially given recent headlines about Surrey Council receiving a special funding deal.
Tory Bin Tax Introduced
Regrettably on the 9th January at an all councillors meeting of the Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council the much despised 'bin tax' was successfully passed. This now means all residents will have to pay an extra £35 a year in order to have their garden refuse disposed of.
All Labour councillors were united in opposition to the new charge which the Tory run council have pushed through with very little public consultation. It is a very disappointing outcome despite our best efforts to block the move. Councillor James Broach gave an excellent speech during the debate highlighting the ill conceived charge, its unfairness to residents and how out of touch this Tory Council is with the people it is supposed to serve.
Expect no rebuke of the charge from our local MP. In fact the new bin tax was celebrated by Grant Shapps, which comes as no surprise. Speaking in the Welwyn Hatfield Times yesterday he praised the Council and said:
'Fortunately, rather than burying its head in the ground, the current Welwyn Hatfield Council administration is at least prepared to make the difficult decisions that mean we remain solvent.'
Our leader, Councillor Kieran Thorpe, speaking about the new bin charge stated:
'Former Local Government ministers like Grant Shapps have enforced crippling reductions to Council funding and should be ashamed of these realities that now emerge. The bin tax has Shapps’ fingerprints all over it.
It is embarrassing that Mr Shapps doesn’t understand that Council tax being frozen for the last few years was only as a result of a government bribe/grant to cover some of the shortfall, rather than as a result of efficiencies by the Council. Of course now that has been withdrawn, everything is going to go up.
Suggestions of Council insolvency are ridiculous and deliberately misleading. This is a case of the Council again making a mess of a consultation with the public, ignoring their view and bringing in charges with no thought, evidence or plans while giving themselves inflation busting pay-rises.
It is a pity that Mr Shapps is so out of touch he does not realise the public anger on this issue and a mark of his vapid integrity that he is so wilfully disingenuous over things he must know are not the way he presents them'.