Hailsham town councillors have agreed to freeze their members’ allowances for the next financial year, as a gesture of good will to resident amid the cost-of-living crisis.
At their latest meeting of Full Council held on Wednesday evening [25 January], it was recommended that allowances paid to all 18 members of the Town Council should not increase to reflect the current unstable economic climate, increased living expenses and austere times facing residents.
All members currently get a basic allowance of £1,358 with the Town Mayor and Chairman of the Council receiving more (£1,875) to reflect additional responsibility. Members’ allowances are reviewed every year.
“Whilst councillors’ allowances only represent a small fraction of the annual Council budget and expenditure, it’s crucial that we all lead by example by accepting a pay freeze, and by playing our part in minimising the Council’s costs and the consequent passing on of costs to residents,” said Town Mayor Cllr Paul Holbrook.
“It’s only right that we freeze our allowances during this extremely difficult and financially worrying time and I’m extremely pleased that our members voted in favour of this recommendation.”
At the same meeting, the Town Council has agreed its budget for 2023-2024 and adopted the recommendation put forward by the Finance, Budget & Resources Committee for the next financial year.
A budget of £1,281,529 has been agreed, with the amount of precept of £1,281,505 to be requisitioned from Wealden District Council.
This means that council tax for a Band D property in Hailsham will be £166.65, which represents only a £3.42 per year increase on the previous year.
Town Council members and officers have worked tirelessly together over many months to ensure that any tax variation is minimised for the next financial year. Difficulties have arisen and the Town Council has been subject to external pressures such as economic inflation and the cost-of-living crisis.
In making the recommendations for the budget, the Town Council aims to provide continuing security for essential services for residents and visitors alike, with value for money improvements where possible.
Terry Hall, Communications Officer
Hailsham Town Council, Market Street, Hailsham, East Sussex, BN27 2AE
Telephone: 01323 841702 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org