Protesters challenge Wiltshire Council’s controversial allowances rise

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: Protesters outside County Hall, Trowbridge, today Protesters outside County Hall, Trowbridge, today

A protest against Wiltshire Council’s controversial allowances rise was supported by GMB and Unison representatives, independent councillors, Labour parliamentary candidates and some council workers today.

An extraordinary meeting started at 10.30am in County Hall, Trowbridge, to revisit the decision to grant allowance increases to all councillors, which sees some receiving an extra 36 per cent.

Protesters gathered at 10am to protest against the rise, and were expected to lobby councillors at noon. 

Gavin Brooks, Unison general organiser, said: "Over the last few years we have hundreds of jobs lost and our members have seen their pay cut by 18 per cent over the last three years.

"So for the council to increase allowances massively is a huge slap in the face to all staff."

Tax payer Paul Gaunt, who started a petition which has been signed by more than 2,600 people, said: When I started the petition I didn't imagine it would end like this, I am so pleased.

"It's not political, it's the voice of the people.

"Leadership is about admitting you can reconsider, and I urge all the councillors to look at their conscience and look long and hard before they make their vote, and put people before politics."

Council leader Jane Scott said she decided to forgo any increase in allowances during the Christmas break as a campaign against the rise had become so personal.

Comments (4)

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12:02pm Tue 4 Feb 14

brasstacks says...

Jane Scott "forgoing any increase in her allowances" is NOT good enough and is certainly not the ONLY Financial Issue at Wilts Council..

Up until yesterday, W/C had STILL NOT Published any Corporate Credit Card Spending SINCE October 2013.....

I for one am hoping and Praying that today, Ms Scott and her Conservative Cabinet will finally realise that the People of Wiltshire and the downtrodden Staff HAVE had enough of the appalling Political obsessions that fill the "Con"Cab" ??....

Who did Carlton Brand treat to a meal at The Pear Tree Inn Melksham and a "take away" BOTH paid for with his W/C Corporate Credit Card ?..

How on earth Jane Scott can "do the rounds of Area Board Meetings waffling on about a Legacy for Wiltshire", heavens only knows given that she is about to cut £500,00 off the Youth Services Budgets ??..

It would be interesting to know what Ms Scott did with the £9.4 Million that she so called pledged for Adult Social Services (2011-2012 "promise"...)..

It is NOT easy running and administering any Council but, Ms Scott, when you are paid to do the best for the People who pay your Allowances to do JUST that, we do NOT expect you to spend Tax Payers money on your OWN Political "dreams and aspirations".....

Having a "majority Cabinet" does NOT mean that you can forget us all in favour of you running W/C like your own "business empire".........
Jane Scott "forgoing any increase in her allowances" is NOT good enough and is certainly not the ONLY Financial Issue at Wilts Council.. Up until yesterday, W/C had STILL NOT Published any Corporate Credit Card Spending SINCE October 2013..... I for one am hoping and Praying that today, Ms Scott and her Conservative Cabinet will finally realise that the People of Wiltshire and the downtrodden Staff HAVE had enough of the appalling Political obsessions that fill the "Con"Cab" ??.... Who did Carlton Brand treat to a meal at The Pear Tree Inn Melksham and a "take away" BOTH paid for with his W/C Corporate Credit Card ?.. How on earth Jane Scott can "do the rounds of Area Board Meetings waffling on about a Legacy for Wiltshire", heavens only knows given that she is about to cut £500,00 off the Youth Services Budgets ??.. It would be interesting to know what Ms Scott did with the £9.4 Million that she so called pledged for Adult Social Services (2011-2012 "promise"...).. It is NOT easy running and administering any Council but, Ms Scott, when you are paid to do the best for the People who pay your Allowances to do JUST that, we do NOT expect you to spend Tax Payers money on your OWN Political "dreams and aspirations"..... Having a "majority Cabinet" does NOT mean that you can forget us all in favour of you running W/C like your own "business empire"......... brasstacks

1:31pm Tue 4 Feb 14

brasstacks says...

Having listened to the BBC Wiltshire Clare Perry MP Interview earlier, I find it incredible that she can even suggest that Ms Scott and her Conservative Cabinet have "improved Services" in Wiltshire !!??....

It's hard to believe that a Harvard Graduate can "do the maths" to come up a PURE Myth that Ms Scott and Co have given us "more Services' !!???...

Shame on you, BBC, for picking a Conservative MP to "fly the Scott flag"....

The People's Flag in Wiltshire HAS been at "half mast' for far too long now and all because of the selfish Political aspirations of Ms Scott and her "Cons-Cab"......

I ,for one, am sick of seeing Local MP's "swan off" to Westminster, Claim 2nd Home Expenses and "air time" to talk absolute drivel......

I would challenge ANY of them to a day in the life of a REAL Person in Wiltshire to prove to them that Ms Scott does NOT provide the Services that she prints on her "Wiltshire Council Policies Tin".......

The bottom line is that WE as Residents are, through no choice of our own, Funding their Political Careers.......that HAS to stop......

ps...TODAY would be nice !!??...
Having listened to the BBC Wiltshire Clare Perry MP Interview earlier, I find it incredible that she can even suggest that Ms Scott and her Conservative Cabinet have "improved Services" in Wiltshire !!??.... It's hard to believe that a Harvard Graduate can "do the maths" to come up a PURE Myth that Ms Scott and Co have given us "more Services' !!???... Shame on you, BBC, for picking a Conservative MP to "fly the Scott flag".... The People's Flag in Wiltshire HAS been at "half mast' for far too long now and all because of the selfish Political aspirations of Ms Scott and her "Cons-Cab"...... I ,for one, am sick of seeing Local MP's "swan off" to Westminster, Claim 2nd Home Expenses and "air time" to talk absolute drivel...... I would challenge ANY of them to a day in the life of a REAL Person in Wiltshire to prove to them that Ms Scott does NOT provide the Services that she prints on her "Wiltshire Council Policies Tin"....... The bottom line is that WE as Residents are, through no choice of our own, Funding their Political Careers.......that HAS to stop...... ps...TODAY would be nice !!??... brasstacks

9:21pm Tue 4 Feb 14

brasstacks says...

It is only fair tonight to take time to remember the Staff at W/C "let go" as a result of the obsessions of a Leader and "Cons-Cab" who HAVE lost touch with reality ....

Please take time to remember the Staff that are left who live in fear of Ms Scott rampaging on ?..

Take time to remember that, your Votes in Elections DO matter and "Independent" IS exactly what it says on the tin".....

Look around your Local Town or Parish and see for yourself just WHICH Councillor cares the most ?.....

Go to your Local Area Board Meetings and TELL Jane Scott that she needs to STOP spending your Taxes on what "she wants"......

Everybody DOES matter in Wiltshire and ...if Ms Scott had adhered to her "promises" to Wiltshire, she would NOT have ended up in the situation that SHE has got herself (and us all) in....
It is only fair tonight to take time to remember the Staff at W/C "let go" as a result of the obsessions of a Leader and "Cons-Cab" who HAVE lost touch with reality .... Please take time to remember the Staff that are left who live in fear of Ms Scott rampaging on ?.. Take time to remember that, your Votes in Elections DO matter and "Independent" IS exactly what it says on the tin"..... Look around your Local Town or Parish and see for yourself just WHICH Councillor cares the most ?..... Go to your Local Area Board Meetings and TELL Jane Scott that she needs to STOP spending your Taxes on what "she wants"...... Everybody DOES matter in Wiltshire and ...if Ms Scott had adhered to her "promises" to Wiltshire, she would NOT have ended up in the situation that SHE has got herself (and us all) in.... brasstacks

6:04pm Mon 10 Feb 14

Friend of the People says...

I understand that some Conservaqtive councillors at this meeting, to scrap the massive increase in councilliors' allowances, really disgraced themselves. They apparently gave a hard time to the speakers who were presenting their petition. Though these members of the public were simply exercising their democratic rights, they were subject to jeering and barracking. The same arrogant Conservative councillors directed their ire at an elderly woman who was simply aswking a question about Swindon housing overspill going into Wiltshire.

This was shameful behavious and has been reported in the Western Daily Press. Also letters of complaint have been sent to the Chairman of the Council.

The Nasty Party is alive and not so well in Wiltshire.
I understand that some Conservaqtive councillors at this meeting, to scrap the massive increase in councilliors' allowances, really disgraced themselves. They apparently gave a hard time to the speakers who were presenting their petition. Though these members of the public were simply exercising their democratic rights, they were subject to jeering and barracking. The same arrogant Conservative councillors directed their ire at an elderly woman who was simply aswking a question about Swindon housing overspill going into Wiltshire. This was shameful behavious and has been reported in the Western Daily Press. Also letters of complaint have been sent to the Chairman of the Council. The Nasty Party is alive and not so well in Wiltshire. Friend of the People

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