Friday, 24 June 2011

It's an ill wind!

If Hartlepool Council is facing the difficult and troubled period we are lead to believe, and needs Mayor Drummond’s firm hand on the tiller, then how can he justify abandoning his post and effectively taking on a second paid job?

As part of the shake up of Cleveland Police Authority Mayor Drummond has reportedly been promoted to Vice Chairman of the Authority. When he joined Cleveland Police Authority, he added an additional £9,548 to his take home pay as Mayor of Hartlepool and the Vice Chairmanship bolsters that by another £6,131.

Councilor’s allowances are supposed to compensate Councilors for the financial implications (such as lost earnings) of serving their communities. They are not supposed to provide lucrative second incomes. Mayor Drummond is a full time politician who is paid over £1,200 a week to carry out his duties. What exactly is he being compensated for with the additional £15,685 he apparently now receives as Vice Chairman of the Police Authority?

If Mayor Drummond has time to devote to the Police Authority then his working day cannot be fully committed as Mayor of Hartlepool? At the very least Drummond should surely follow the example of his Chief Executive and return to the Council the extras cash he now takes from his second job. That £15,685 a year would keep a minimum wage employee at the council off the dole cue. Maybe Mayor Drummond could lead by example and show some restraint in what he is gobbling down from the public trough!

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