Humberston and New Waltham by-election a waste of cash
SO we are to have a by-election in Humberston and New Waltham! We already have two councillors, why do we need a third and what will it achieve?
Firstly, whoever called the election (probably a minority party on an ego trip) has saddled our cash-strapped authority with the cost of staging the by-election.
Secondly, whichever councillor wins the seat will be eligible for allowances and other benefits totalling in excess of £7,000 a year.
Thirdly, if a minority party such as UKIP wins the seat, this will mean they will have two seats on NELC, which I believe makes them a party and their party leader qualifies for leaders' allowances.
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Whichever party gets elected it will have no effect on the make-up of the council and Councillors Shaw and Burnett, along with their gang of headline-grabbing cronies, will continue to do as they like with this authority. So let's all hope it rains on April 4 and everyone stays at home.
Maybe it is time the electoral commission looked at the number of councillors we have in each ward, cut back the numbers and saved thousands of pounds.
Grahame Williams, Albery Way, New Waltham.
Elizabeth Lidster, head of Civic and Democratic Services at North East Lincolnshire Council, said: "The Humberston and New Waltham ward has three elected representatives, the number approved by the Boundary Commission on the establishment of North East Lincolnshire Council in 1996.
"Following the death of one of the elected representatives, Councillor John Colebrook, in December, a by-election has now been called to fill the resulting vacancy following a request submitted – as required in law – by two registered electors of the ward.
"The allowances payable to those elected are set out in the scheme of allowances in the Council's Constitution. The rate of allowance is determined by an independent remuneration panel, which does not include any serving councillors, and all allowances claimed are published annually.
"Two or more councillors of the same political party may form themselves into a political group. A small additional allowance is payable to the leaders of opposition political groups; for a group of two to four members, the annual allowance payable is £2,250."
The Telegraph says
Would it have been better to have waited until the next local elections to save cost? But would that have been fair to the residents of Humberston and New Waltham who have the right to be represented fully – can two councillors afford the spare time to do that? Let us know your views on whether there are too many councillors.