Richard Kemp responds to Times article on council wages - 10 Aug 2009
Richard Kemp has today written a letter to the Times editor, clarifying the Lib Dem position on council staff wages.
10th August 2009
Your article today which suggests Tory parsimony and Lib Dem and Labour profligacy (Tories ready to tackle the unions) over council staff wages is only half the story.
1. The biggest problem negotiators of all sides had were the increases given by Councils outside the national negotiations. These included 2.25% at Tory Buckinghamshire which is led by the Leader of the Tories at the LGA and an eye-watering 4.8% at Tory South Oxfordshire.
2. One third of council staff ranging from coroners to teachers had already received increase averaging more than 2% from negotiations outside our control
3. All other public sector staff many of whom work alongside council staff had received a similar 2%+ average increase.
4. We have blocked any increase at all this year for staff effectively in the top three grades.
All council not just Tory ones are well aware of major financial problems ahead and are preparing for cuts of up to 10% in our budgets in real terms over the next three years irrespective of who wins the next General Election.
In a time of increased demand for our services Lib Dem councillors will be seeking fair play for our users, our tax payers and our staff.
Leader, LGA Liberal Democrats
Contact Phone Number 07885 626913