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City councillors don't rake it in; Views of the North.

ALAN Carter in his letter, Now's the time to cut councillors, (Journal December 3) refers to councillors - "many of them are on six-figure salaries".

This is a common misperception perpetuated by misinformation and exaggeration.

In Newcastle, councillors receive a basic allowance of PS9,210 - hardly a six-figure sum.

The basic allowance, which all councillors are entitled to, is the fourth lowest out of seven councils in the North East, and lower than many similar sized local authorities nationally. In addition we have also reduced by 12% our total bill for special responsibility allowances which are given to members who may be cabinet members or chair a committee.

We have consistently rejected recommendations from the independent remuneration panel to increase allowances in line with other councils.

Elsewhere in the council we have saved millions of pounds by reducing the number of managers in the organisation with further reductions planned.

Words like expensive and bloated may well be applicable to Government at a national level but at Newcastle City Council we continue to bear down on these costs in the interests of the taxpayer.

Coun JOYCE McCARTY, deputy leader of Newcastle City Council.
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Title Annotation:Letters
Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Dec 6, 2012
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