Here's a way to save money

First published in Letters

COUNCILLOR Bright, many thanks for the personal letter sent to my home from yourself explaining why you cannot stop the allowances councillors get paid.

I have two points to raise, however. 1) If you must be paid and are not allowed to refuse, I suggest as the councillor for whatever area you represent, Pill, for instance, you donate your allowances. In this case that would mean around £45,000 going back into the area for good causes such as the community centre.

In Lliswerry this would mean around £60,000, and for my area, Ringland, even more, making a big difference to the area a councillor represents. 2) You say you have tough times ahead with budgets and lack of money.

Please do not send me a council-headed letter with a franking stamp which costs tax payers’ money next time, send me an email, you have my address. If everyone agreed to point one then we would have a massive £850,000 or so before taxation going back into the local communities, not a bad return from our councillors.

Raymond Lord Dunstable Road Newport

Comments (14)

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1:20pm Tue 15 Jan 13

Owain Vaughan says...

Alternatively, why don't you stand for councillor and then do all the work for free, whilst simultaneously being berated by the public all the time?
Alternatively, why don't you stand for councillor and then do all the work for free, whilst simultaneously being berated by the public all the time? Owain Vaughan
  • Score: 0

1:43pm Tue 15 Jan 13

Cwmderi says...

If councillors elect to forgo or receive a lesser amount of payment/allowances for undertaking their duties, then they a perfectly entitled to do so.
I know of one councillor who does not take a penny from his local authority as he is in a financial position to do so.
I would not expect any leader of any authority not to be properly paid for undertaking their very responsible roles. However, there are far too many senior councillors who are also raking it in from sitting on outside bodies like Fire and the Welsh Local Goverment Association. One of their nice little earners was being a member of the Police Authority but now we have elected commissioners this payment has been massively reduced.
However, there is nothing stopping councillor Bright from throwing a few pounds into his local ward for good causes.
If councillors elect to forgo or receive a lesser amount of payment/allowances for undertaking their duties, then they a perfectly entitled to do so. I know of one councillor who does not take a penny from his local authority as he is in a financial position to do so. I would not expect any leader of any authority not to be properly paid for undertaking their very responsible roles. However, there are far too many senior councillors who are also raking it in from sitting on outside bodies like Fire and the Welsh Local Goverment Association. One of their nice little earners was being a member of the Police Authority but now we have elected commissioners this payment has been massively reduced. However, there is nothing stopping councillor Bright from throwing a few pounds into his local ward for good causes. Cwmderi
  • Score: 0

1:44pm Tue 15 Jan 13

Cwmderi says...

If councillors elect to forgo or receive a lesser amount of payment/allowances for undertaking their duties, then they a perfectly entitled to do so.
I know of one councillor who does not take a penny from his local authority as he is in a financial position to do so.
I would not expect any leader of any authority not to be properly paid for undertaking their very responsible roles. However, there are far too many senior councillors who are also raking it in from sitting on outside bodies like Fire and the Welsh Local Goverment Association. One of their nice little earners was being a member of the Police Authority but now we have elected commissioners this payment has been massively reduced.
However, there is nothing stopping councillor Bright from throwing a few pounds into his local ward for good causes.
If councillors elect to forgo or receive a lesser amount of payment/allowances for undertaking their duties, then they a perfectly entitled to do so. I know of one councillor who does not take a penny from his local authority as he is in a financial position to do so. I would not expect any leader of any authority not to be properly paid for undertaking their very responsible roles. However, there are far too many senior councillors who are also raking it in from sitting on outside bodies like Fire and the Welsh Local Goverment Association. One of their nice little earners was being a member of the Police Authority but now we have elected commissioners this payment has been massively reduced. However, there is nothing stopping councillor Bright from throwing a few pounds into his local ward for good causes. Cwmderi
  • Score: 0

2:34pm Tue 15 Jan 13

whatintheworld says...

Owain Vaughan wrote:
Alternatively, why don't you stand for councillor and then do all the work for free, whilst simultaneously being berated by the public all the time?
THIS. Basic salary for a councilor is around £13k in Torfaen. I COULDN'T give up full time work to accept this wage, escpecially with the hours councilors put in. Why people think councilors are lining their pockets with public money is beyond me!
[quote][p][bold]Owain Vaughan[/bold] wrote: Alternatively, why don't you stand for councillor and then do all the work for free, whilst simultaneously being berated by the public all the time?[/p][/quote]THIS. Basic salary for a councilor is around £13k in Torfaen. I COULDN'T give up full time work to accept this wage, escpecially with the hours councilors put in. Why people think councilors are lining their pockets with public money is beyond me! whatintheworld
  • Score: 0

7:12pm Tue 15 Jan 13

Votefornoneoftheabove says...

Owen Vaughan I believe that this person sent a letter last week saying he would do the job for free and also asked others to run for free at the next election. As for the hours councillors put in really, do you honestly think they put in forty hours per week? I am not attempting to have a dig at anyone who not only wants to represent the ward they live in but also donate all allowances to the deprived are he/she lives in. Surely the role of councillor is not looked upon for what an individual can get out if it, but more for what he/she wants to do to make a difference. All councillors should be independent, in the past eight months only one Labour councillor has stood up for what he believes in, Chris Evans a man it appears has the best interests of his area and Newport at heart and not the leaders of Newport City Council who have shown how dated they are, make Chris Evans leader of Newport before it's too late. Lets vote for None Of The Above at the next concil elections unless they stick to promises!
Owen Vaughan I believe that this person sent a letter last week saying he would do the job for free and also asked others to run for free at the next election. As for the hours councillors put in really, do you honestly think they put in forty hours per week? I am not attempting to have a dig at anyone who not only wants to represent the ward they live in but also donate all allowances to the deprived are he/she lives in. Surely the role of councillor is not looked upon for what an individual can get out if it, but more for what he/she wants to do to make a difference. All councillors should be independent, in the past eight months only one Labour councillor has stood up for what he believes in, Chris Evans a man it appears has the best interests of his area and Newport at heart and not the leaders of Newport City Council who have shown how dated they are, make Chris Evans leader of Newport before it's too late. Lets vote for None Of The Above at the next concil elections unless they stick to promises! Votefornoneoftheabove
  • Score: 0

8:39pm Tue 15 Jan 13

Bobevans says...

Do we realy need so many Councillors. If one MP is adequate for about 70,000 of electorate do we really need one councilor per 4000 of electorate. Could we just not dispence of a lot of them. Two per ward is more than adequate
Do we realy need so many Councillors. If one MP is adequate for about 70,000 of electorate do we really need one councilor per 4000 of electorate. Could we just not dispence of a lot of them. Two per ward is more than adequate Bobevans
  • Score: 0

9:21pm Tue 15 Jan 13

On the inside says...

If you do not pay elected representatives be they Cllrs, AM's, MP's or MEP's then the only ones who can stand are the independently wealthy (Tories almost without exception) or the retired. There are many good representatives over the age of 65, but I doubt all representatives being over 65 would suit most voters.
If you do not pay elected representatives be they Cllrs, AM's, MP's or MEP's then the only ones who can stand are the independently wealthy (Tories almost without exception) or the retired. There are many good representatives over the age of 65, but I doubt all representatives being over 65 would suit most voters. On the inside
  • Score: 0

10:09pm Tue 15 Jan 13

Votefornoneoftheabove says...

Bob Evans all valid points, as for On The Inside, It appears that you are not a Conservative voter, neither am I. The people of Newport need to realise one thing, just because our parents and grandparents voted Labour doesn't mean that we have to. Vote for the person who best represents your ward, it does not matter what colour rosette he/she is wearing. I also feel that there are too many councillors not being challenged and they should only serve one term. They should not go up for re-election until after another full term by other candidates has passed. I am a great believer that familiarity breeds contempt. This appears to be the case of the present Labour council, it's like a jobs for the boys culture. Newport needs a shake up and the people of Newport need to make things happen. I do not know much of Chris Evans but like anyone prepared to stand up to leader. I am so disappointed by promises that are forever broken, pledges that are never met, and councillors knocking on my door every 4/5 years wanting my vote. I say Vote For None Of The Above, Did you know that one councillor for St Julian’s came from Cardiff, apparently the leader of the council comes from Alt-yrn one of Newport's most affluent areas and represents Ringland and a councillor for Alway live in Langstone. What the heck is that about? People are taking the money and nothing is changing. Let's make them make a change or make them move on, Labour, Conservative and Lib Dems, UKIP everyone, get people in prepared to change Newport. We are not and never will be Cardiff, let's stop competing and find our own identity.
Bob Evans all valid points, as for On The Inside, It appears that you are not a Conservative voter, neither am I. The people of Newport need to realise one thing, just because our parents and grandparents voted Labour doesn't mean that we have to. Vote for the person who best represents your ward, it does not matter what colour rosette he/she is wearing. I also feel that there are too many councillors not being challenged and they should only serve one term. They should not go up for re-election until after another full term by other candidates has passed. I am a great believer that familiarity breeds contempt. This appears to be the case of the present Labour council, it's like a jobs for the boys culture. Newport needs a shake up and the people of Newport need to make things happen. I do not know much of Chris Evans but like anyone prepared to stand up to leader. I am so disappointed by promises that are forever broken, pledges that are never met, and councillors knocking on my door every 4/5 years wanting my vote. I say Vote For None Of The Above, Did you know that one councillor for St Julian’s came from Cardiff, apparently the leader of the council comes from Alt-yrn one of Newport's most affluent areas and represents Ringland and a councillor for Alway live in Langstone. What the heck is that about? People are taking the money and nothing is changing. Let's make them make a change or make them move on, Labour, Conservative and Lib Dems, UKIP everyone, get people in prepared to change Newport. We are not and never will be Cardiff, let's stop competing and find our own identity. Votefornoneoftheabove
  • Score: 0

9:27am Wed 16 Jan 13

Mr Angry says...

If you not pay Elected Representatives then only those independantly wealthy will stand, - thats not right.

I would not put in the hours required, get slagged of in the press by people who know nothing of the workings of local government - and all for nothing.

I know people of various political views who would make excellent councilors, but would you get slated on a regular basis by ignorant people like Bob Evans in the local rag for 13K a year, just above minium wage - for running a City with a massive budget ?
If you not pay Elected Representatives then only those independantly wealthy will stand, - thats not right. I would not put in the hours required, get slagged of in the press by people who know nothing of the workings of local government - and all for nothing. I know people of various political views who would make excellent councilors, but would you get slated on a regular basis by ignorant people like Bob Evans in the local rag for 13K a year, just above minium wage - for running a City with a massive budget ? Mr Angry
  • Score: 0

12:09pm Wed 16 Jan 13

Votefornoneoftheabove says...

Mr Angry, you miss the point, it is not a full time job being a councillor. Therefore if you divide hours actually worked by the near 15k you get paid you are getting more than the minimum wage, the Leader for example gets in the region of 40-50k. My oint is simple, the only people who should run for a ward are the people who live in that ward. I am sure you do not have to be independently wealthy to run. The money goes to good causes in the ward you represent rather than the individual. Far too many people are making a career out of being a councillor and do not have much interest in moving their wards forward. As I have said, the next time I see a councillor will be in 2017 when the next elections are due. We are being told that Newport has a 10 million black hole. If all councillors worked for free for the next 10 years that deficeit would be virtually filled on this saving alone. The original letter sent does raise some challening points. As I say Votefornoneoftheabov
e at the next election, vote for local people who are going to make a difference, not take the money and do nothing!
Mr Angry, you miss the point, it is not a full time job being a councillor. Therefore if you divide hours actually worked by the near 15k you get paid you are getting more than the minimum wage, the Leader for example gets in the region of 40-50k. My oint is simple, the only people who should run for a ward are the people who live in that ward. I am sure you do not have to be independently wealthy to run. The money goes to good causes in the ward you represent rather than the individual. Far too many people are making a career out of being a councillor and do not have much interest in moving their wards forward. As I have said, the next time I see a councillor will be in 2017 when the next elections are due. We are being told that Newport has a 10 million black hole. If all councillors worked for free for the next 10 years that deficeit would be virtually filled on this saving alone. The original letter sent does raise some challening points. As I say Votefornoneoftheabov e at the next election, vote for local people who are going to make a difference, not take the money and do nothing! Votefornoneoftheabove
  • Score: 0

12:47pm Wed 16 Jan 13

Mr Angry says...

You say it is not a full time job being a Councillor - people ring their Councillor any time day or night and would expect their matters delt with. It is expected that Councillors be availble on a full time basis.Would you be happy if your Councillor missed meetings because or wasn't available because of 'Work Committments'

And why should anyone work for nothing ?
You say it is not a full time job being a Councillor - people ring their Councillor any time day or night and would expect their matters delt with. It is expected that Councillors be availble on a full time basis.Would you be happy if your Councillor missed meetings because or wasn't available because of 'Work Committments' And why should anyone work for nothing ? Mr Angry
  • Score: 0

3:08pm Wed 16 Jan 13

Bobevans says...

Mr Angry wrote:
You say it is not a full time job being a Councillor - people ring their Councillor any time day or night and would expect their matters delt with. It is expected that Councillors be availble on a full time basis.Would you be happy if your Councillor missed meetings because or wasn't available because of 'Work Committments'

And why should anyone work for nothing ?
Being a Councillor is not a full time job. It involves about 6 meetings a year & a few hours a week

Much of the problem is they have moved meeting to 2:00pm. I suspect to suit the many Councillor that work for LA's etc. THat way thy can do it in the LA's time instead of their own.

Meetings should go back to being held in the evenings

AS for them being inundated with Calls & letters thats rubbish. A councilor serves about 4000 of the electorate and most never contact a councillor. If the get 1 letter or call a eek they are lucky
[quote][p][bold]Mr Angry[/bold] wrote: You say it is not a full time job being a Councillor - people ring their Councillor any time day or night and would expect their matters delt with. It is expected that Councillors be availble on a full time basis.Would you be happy if your Councillor missed meetings because or wasn't available because of 'Work Committments' And why should anyone work for nothing ?[/p][/quote]Being a Councillor is not a full time job. It involves about 6 meetings a year & a few hours a week Much of the problem is they have moved meeting to 2:00pm. I suspect to suit the many Councillor that work for LA's etc. THat way thy can do it in the LA's time instead of their own. Meetings should go back to being held in the evenings AS for them being inundated with Calls & letters thats rubbish. A councilor serves about 4000 of the electorate and most never contact a councillor. If the get 1 letter or call a eek they are lucky Bobevans
  • Score: 0

8:01pm Wed 16 Jan 13

On the inside says...

Allowing Cllrs to only serve one term is the sort of arrant nonsense you often hear from the 'no politics' loonys. All that would mean is that non elected officers were in permanant control. Anyone would think it is a criminal offence to select a political party that is nearest to your views and then try to change the policies you don't like. After all if these 'independents' are as near to god as some pretend it will only take them a few days to bend everyone to their will.
Allowing Cllrs to only serve one term is the sort of arrant nonsense you often hear from the 'no politics' loonys. All that would mean is that non elected officers were in permanant control. Anyone would think it is a criminal offence to select a political party that is nearest to your views and then try to change the policies you don't like. After all if these 'independents' are as near to god as some pretend it will only take them a few days to bend everyone to their will. On the inside
  • Score: 0

11:42pm Wed 16 Jan 13

Votefornoneoftheabove says...

On The Inside, I find it hard to believe that people do not understand that when you become a councillor for the first time you go in purely to make a difference. The issues arise when they go in for a second and third term, they get complancent, go along with the leader, are to scared to speak out and just tow the line and take the money. Chris Evans is new to the job, abd this is a fine example of new blood coming in ans speaking up for what he feels is right and not towing to Mr Bright's line. I am not saying that Chris will change his attitude in 5-10 years time but all human beings become complacent. For the record the man in councillor in charge of regenertation is only the same man who was the chairman in charge of the Labour Clubs when they went down, and also the Orb club. If he cannot help them out how is he supposed to regenerate Newport? As you say though I must be a loony, well I work in business, have never been unemployed and have worked for everything I have. I do not want people to bend to my will as you state I want people to wake up. Lets stick to voting Labour, Lib Dem, Conservative and the like, nothing will change, you will still be calling people who loonys and Newport will find it is totally knackered. I am not God, I am a person who is not happy with the state I see my town in. You just do not get what I have said earlier, people still stand for the ward they live in, but they have regular meetings with the people who elected them asking what needs to be done to improve the area they represent. At the moment a councillor promises to look after the ward when elections are due, then the leader says no, tow the line! I am not telling people how to live or run their lives just giving my interpritation pf life as I see it from a councillors perspective, living in the real world mate. Don't forget in 2017 Votefornoneoftheabov
e make a difference.
On The Inside, I find it hard to believe that people do not understand that when you become a councillor for the first time you go in purely to make a difference. The issues arise when they go in for a second and third term, they get complancent, go along with the leader, are to scared to speak out and just tow the line and take the money. Chris Evans is new to the job, abd this is a fine example of new blood coming in ans speaking up for what he feels is right and not towing to Mr Bright's line. I am not saying that Chris will change his attitude in 5-10 years time but all human beings become complacent. For the record the man in councillor in charge of regenertation is only the same man who was the chairman in charge of the Labour Clubs when they went down, and also the Orb club. If he cannot help them out how is he supposed to regenerate Newport? As you say though I must be a loony, well I work in business, have never been unemployed and have worked for everything I have. I do not want people to bend to my will as you state I want people to wake up. Lets stick to voting Labour, Lib Dem, Conservative and the like, nothing will change, you will still be calling people who loonys and Newport will find it is totally knackered. I am not God, I am a person who is not happy with the state I see my town in. You just do not get what I have said earlier, people still stand for the ward they live in, but they have regular meetings with the people who elected them asking what needs to be done to improve the area they represent. At the moment a councillor promises to look after the ward when elections are due, then the leader says no, tow the line! I am not telling people how to live or run their lives just giving my interpritation pf life as I see it from a councillors perspective, living in the real world mate. Don't forget in 2017 Votefornoneoftheabov e make a difference. Votefornoneoftheabove
  • Score: 0

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