Thursday, 14 July 2011

Member's budgets could be used to buy votes at the taxpayer's expense.

Details of Cheshire and Chester Council Member's budgets [My comment: Why not check out your own council.]

Over the past two years Members - given £5,000 a year for their own personal member budgets totalling £790,000 - funded 770 schemes for 465 organisations.

The figures were revealed when the annual report of the Members Budgets Expenditure Report went before the Executive last night (Wednesday).

This year’s Member budgets have increased to £10,000 for each of the 75 Councillors and Council Leader Mike Jones hopes that over the next four years they will rise to £60,000 per member. [My comment: That's £4.5 million for councillors to spend on individual pet projects which could be used to boost the number of people who vote for them.]

“I put £3,000 into a £50,000 project for nets for the young people in the local area and they have got a first class facility for cricket in Tattenhall now.

“So its what a local member sees as important. It allows local members to be innovative in working in some fantastic schemes going on in your community and to really be an enterprising force in your communities.”

My comment: Whilst there is no doubt member's budgets can be used for good causes there is a serious risk that some members could use them to indirectly buy votes. The council as a whole should award money to good causes not individual councillors.

PS Why not add details of your council as a comment or send me a link to the information and I will add it to this post. 

Read more information from the source Cheshire West and Chester Council

Read all articles about Cheshire West & Chester Council on this blog and more articles about them on my dedicated CWaC Council blog

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