I READ Councillor Howlett’s defence of Conservative mathematics with interest last week.
There appears to be confusion about Ms Howlett’s ‘amount claimed’, which relates to expenses such as train fares, and the allowances, which are not claimed but paid automatically. Ms Howlett appeared to use the allowance to reach her figure of £25,000 saved, but spoke of it as being claimed.
Once this is cleared up, there is still a spot of bother. If the number of councillors was reduced (which I do not argue with), we would still need a Leader, a Deputy Leader, a Cabinet, a Planning Committee etc, whose expenses would not change; these expenses are higher than those for a jobbing councillor like me.
And once this is sorted, it’s still going to be a bit tricky – Eastbourne has one of the lowest allowances in the South East (kept low by the LibDems, despite the Conservatives’ attempt to double it) and one the fewest number of councillors per head of population.
I actually couldn’t do any more case work than I already do.
However, thank you Ms Howlett for keeping the debate going. Please let’s use the letters page to keep it up.
Councillor Alex Hough
Old Orchard Road