Mansfield councillors all set to receive iPads

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Councillors in Mansfield are set to receive iPad computers in a bid to save the authority cash.

All 36 councillors will receive the state-of-the-art tablets, which cost around £400 each ,as part of the recently-agreed allowance scheme that was discussed at the latest full council meeting.

Ruth Marlow, the managing director of Mansfield District Council, said: “The council’s independent remuneration panel into members’ allowances met in October 2014 to review the current scheme of allowances and to propose the adoption of a new scheme.

“Among the panel’s recommendations, was that councillors should each be entitled to claim up to £400 for relevant IT equipment within 12 months of election to the council.

“Instead of approving this recommendation, the council unanimously agreed to purchase an iPad and data package for each councillor following the May elections to enable them to carry out their duties.

“Councillors will be able to access reports and emails, which will reduce the current cost of paperwork being circulated and help them to work more efficiently while making sure they can access council information securely.

“Training will be provided and the introduction of iPads will mean improved and consistent IT support can be provided.”

As part of the agreement, the council would no longer continue a payment to 
councillors for internet allowance on their personal computers.

However, it was explained that internet package bought with the iPads will compensate for the loss of the internet allowance.

It was explained that the iPads will also be utilised by councillors for meeting agendas so as to cut down on the amount of paper, which the council predicts would be £4,000 a year.

However, some councillors did express concern during the meeting saying that they still wanted physical copies of the minutes and agendas.

The changes and recommendations will be implemented from 1st April.