Posted by: westlancashirerecord | February 12, 2018

Down At 52 Derby Street WLBC Discriminates Against The Public

In West Lancashire Towers , and all over the country, council treasury wallahs are apparently facing financial Armageddon on our behalf. It appears that the days of inflation busting council tax increases are back. Increases painful to those who can least afford them, state pensioners come to mind, will be placed ahead of sniffing out wasteful spending. But if you scratch below the surface at West Lancashire Towers it seems no heed has been given to a reduction of councillor numbers or the generosity of staff benefits, one of which uses a discriminatory statement by actually comparing one staff leisure benefit with what the public pays!

Mention of staff benefits made public might cause apoplexy in the local council unions. The alternative, lost jobs, might be more painful. But not just yet, as today there are four quite well paid vacancies at West Lancashire Towers including a Senior Legal Executive, a Construction Design and Management Officer, a Fleet Services Manager, and an Anti-Social Behaviour Officer. Salary range for the four vacancies is £23,398 up to £37,306, plus the usual bag of goodies, including all Council employees receiving free car parking.

And we must mention the Costco Wholesale membership of the warehouse club, providing members with quality goods and services at lower prices. “As an employee of West Lancashire Borough Council, you will qualify for individual membership (annual membership fee of £33.50 inclusive of VAT), which includes a complimentary card for your spouse or domestic partner. It doesn’t end there as “Shopping with CSSC through the My Savings+ discount scheme and CSSC’s online shop with access to hundreds of local and national offers, family days out, dining, and gym membership – the discounts are endless”. “Free entry to English Heritage sites included in the programme for yourself, one other adult and accompanying children (max 6) with your CSSC card”, but £70 a year for Mr and Mrs Joint Senior (Pensioner)!

Here’s another special in the goody bag “As an employee of West Lancashire Borough Council, you will be able to join Edge Hill Sport at the corporate rate of membership which provides a discounted rate compared to members of the public”. Yes, WLBC discriminates by comparing a staff deal to what we must pay, which is an annual range of £250 standard off-peak to £445 premier !

Recently West Lancashire Borough Council management governance was shown to have failed as it paid its employees £382,548 in council mileage allowances. It was reimbursing its employees from council tax at a rate of 65p per mile, as opposed to the HMRC approved rate of 45p. WLBC stated “Different mileage rates were paid for different types of car user and car engine sizes. Rates started at 36.9p with 65p being the highest rate paid. These amounts were based on rates set by the National Joint Council for local government services, which a lot of Councils would have used. Since April 2017, the Council has paid HMRC rates of 45p per mile for all business mileage. This change in terms and conditions was agreed with unions”.

Earlier this month, Northamptonshire went effectively bankrupt, becoming the first local authority in two decades to issue a section 114 notice. This signalled that its finances were so precarious it would be unlikely to balance the books this year and was at risk of being unable to set a legal budget for 2018-19. It won’t be the last and others will declare “This Council has made or is about to make a decision which involves or would involve the authority incurring expenditure which is unlawful”.


Responses

  1. £382,548 at 65p per mile equals 588,535 miles travelled. Wow these council employees sure get around!

    • Yes, and while they were travelling so much their free parking places were waiting for when they returned!

  2. And how much does a low paid NHS domestic or porter from Ormskirk Hospital pay for their parking during their shift?

    • Last figures I saw were “All NHS staff who work 0 – 20 hours pay £150 per annum. Any fraction of hours above 20 £300 per annum. A designated parking zone is £500 per annum”…but that may have changed?


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