Nottinghamshire Council members’ expenses totalled nearly £44,000 last year

Nottinghamshire’s county councillors claimed nearly £44,000 in combined expenses in the most recent financial year.
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Two Conservatives on the authority have explained their high expenses claims as the authority outlines its full claims list for 2022/23.

The council produces its councillor allowances and expenses list every year as a way of being transparent with the public about sums paid to elected members.

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The 2022/23 paper reveals £43,983.22 was claimed in total across the 66 elected members of the authority – more than £10,000 higher than the £32,254.55 figure claimed in 2021/22.

Nottinghamshire Council is based at County Hall, West Bridgford.Nottinghamshire Council is based at County Hall, West Bridgford.
Nottinghamshire Council is based at County Hall, West Bridgford.

The new total includes £35,206.42 claimed by the 35 Conservative councillors, £7,281.10 by Labour’s 15 politicians and £1,189.70 by the 15 Independent Alliance members. The remaining £306 was claimed by Coun Steve Garner, an unaligned Independent.

The report shows some councillors claimed nothing across the financial year, while others claimed thousands of pounds for travel and other expenditure accrued through their role.

Coun Ben Bradley, council leader, claimed £362.45 for the year, while fellow Conservatives and senior cabinet members Coun Neil Clarke and Coun Keith Girling claimed £2,438.10 and £3,107.25 respectively.

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The two highest claims were made by Conservatives Coun Tracey Taylor, cabinet member for children and families, and Coun Boyd Elliott.

Coun Tracey Taylor, Conservative member for Misterton and cabinet member for children and families.Coun Tracey Taylor, Conservative member for Misterton and cabinet member for children and families.
Coun Tracey Taylor, Conservative member for Misterton and cabinet member for children and families.

Coun Taylor, who claimed £4,877.18, said her expenses were for visits to schools, children’s homes and youth centres in “every part of Nottinghamshire”.

She says she also makes the 93-mile round trip from her Misterton division to County Hall several times each week.

She said: “I’m a cabinet member running one of the biggest portfolios at the council. This means I have to be at County Hall three or four days a week dealing with children and family issues as well as senior Conservative Group meetings.

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“I live in the northernmost part of the county and this is a round trip of 93 miles.

“As well as my County Hall business, I regularly visit schools, children’s homes and youth centres every month, which can take me to every part of Nottinghamshire.”

Coun Elliott, who claimed £3,472.55, said his expenses relate to work with outside bodies and separate charity work supporting struggling families in his division.

He said: “A lot of it is expenses for the two outside bodies I chair, including Standing Advisory Council for Religious Education, which hosts events all around the county.

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“During lockdown, I also helped to set up a shopping scheme for vulnerable residents that identified a cohort of people who can’t get out. I’ve carried on doing a lot of that.

“Without being able to claim my fuel, I possibly wouldn’t be able to feed all of those families so there’s nothing untoward there.”

However, the expenses figures led to the Independent Alliance opposition group calling for a “proper review and a value for money assessment” of the expenses system.

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Coun Helen-Ann Smith, the group’s deputy leader, said: “Councillors have a duty to ensure we get the best value for money for taxpayers.”

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In the report, Adrian Smith, council chief executive, said the sums accrued include the totals paid to councillors after claims were made.

All fees claimed by councillors were approved by the authority’s democratic services department prior to the report being published.

However, the figures do not include train travel or accommodation, which are funded by the authority but have not been featured in the report.

Mr Smith said: “Travel and subsistence amounts are the totals paid during the year based on claims made by members.

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“Members’ duties at times necessitate the use of train travel and overnight accommodation.

“Most of these costs are met directly by the authority and are not included in the figures.”

Expenses for each councillor, which includes travel expenses and ‘subsistence expenses’.

Coun Reg Adair – Conservative member for Leake and Ruddington division: £81;

Coun Mike Adams – Con, Carlton East: £557.10;

Coun Pauline Allan – Labour, Arnold North: £234;

Coun Sinead Anderson – Con, Mansfield West: £1,014.59;

Coun Callum Bailey – Con, Worksop North: £0;

Coun Matt Barney – Con, Leake and Ruddington: £1,455.64;

Coun Chris Barnfather – Con, Newstead: £1,611.05;

Coun Ben Bradley – Con, Mansfield North: £362.45;

Coun Richard Butler – Con, Cotgrave: £600.60;

Coun Anne Callaghan – Lab, Mansfield North: £824.85;

Coun Andre Camilleri – Con, Mansfield South: £643.05;

Coun Scott Carlton – Con, Sherwood Forest: £1,954.35;

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Coun Steve Carr – Liberal Democrats, Bramcote and Beeston North: £0;

Coun John Clarke – Lab, Arnold South : £0;

Coun Neil Clarke – Con, Bingham West: £2,438.10;

Coun Rob Corden – Con, Mansfield East: £316.80;

Coun John Cottee – Con, Keyworth: £1,663;

Coun Jim Creamer – Lab, Carlton West: £60.70;

Coun Debbie Darby – Independent, Collingham: £284.40;

Coun Samantha Deakin – Ashfield Independents, Sutton Central and East: £0;

Coun Dr John Doddy – Con, Stapleford and Broxtowe Central: £0;

Coun Bethan Eddy – Con, Warsop: £302.90;

Coun Boyd Elliott – Con, Calverton: £3,472.55;

Coun Sybil Fielding – Lab, Worksop West: £241.20;

Coun Kate Foale – Lab, Beeston Central and Rylands: £0;

Coun Steve Garner – Ind, Mansfield South: £306;

Coun Glynn Gilfoyle – Lab, Worksop East: £523.95;

Coun Keith Girling – Con, Newark West: £3,107.25;

Coun Penny Gowland – Lab, West Bridgford North: £0;

Coun Errol Henry – Lab, Carlton West: £101.25;

Coun Paul Henshaw – Lab, Mansfield West: £1,084.05;

Coun Tom Hollis – Ash Ind, Sutton West: £447.30;

Coun Mike Introna – Con, Retford East: £794.70;

Coun Richard Jackson – Con, Toton, Chilwell and Attenborough: £571.50;

Coun Roger Jackson – Con, Southwell: £1,151.10;

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Coun Eric Kerry – Con, Toton, Chilwell and Attenborough: £0;

Coun Bruce Laughton – Con, Muskham and Farnsfield: £1,976.85;

Coun Johno Lee – Con, Balderton: £477;

Coun David Martin – Ash Ind, Selston: £0;

Coun John ‘Maggie’ McGrath – Lab, Stapleford and Broxtowe Central: £0;

Coun Andy Meakin – Ash Ind, Kirkby North: £0;

Coun Nigel Moxon – Con, Mansfield East: £0;

Coun John Ogle – Con, Tuxford: £2,258.20;

Coun Kane Oliver – Ind, Eastwood: £42.20;

Coun Philip Owen – Con, Nuthall and Kimberley: £387.86;

Coun Michael Payne – Lab, Arnold North: £0;

Coun Sheila Place – Lab, Blyth and Harworth: £1,871.10;

Coun Mike Pringle – Lab, Ollerton: £2,340;

Coun Francis Purdue-Horan – Ind, Bingham East: £82.40;

Coun Mike Quigley – Con, Retford West: £1,049.45;

Coun Sue Saddington – Con, Farndon and Trent: £824.40;

Coun David Shaw – Ash Ind, Hucknall West: £0;

Coun Helen-Ann Smith – Ash Ind, Sutton North: £0;

Coun Sam Smith – Con, Newark East: £782.55;

Coun Tom Smith – Con, Blidworth: £0;

Coun Tracey Taylor – Con, Misterton: £4,877.18;

Coun Nigel Turner – Con, Worksop South: £475.20;

Coun Roger Upton – Con, Radcliffe on Trent: £0;

Coun Lee Waters – Ash Ind, Hucknall South: £65.30;

Coun Michelle Welsh – Lab, Arnold South: £0;

Coun Gordon Wheeler – Con, West Bridgford West: £0;

Coun Jonathan Wheeler – Con, West Bridgford South: £0;

Daniel Williamson – Ash Ind, Kirkby South: £0;

Coun Elizabeth Williamson – Ind, Greasley and Brinsley: £0;

Coun John Wilmott – Ash Ind, Hucknall North: £168.75;

Coun Jason Zadrozny – Ash Ind, Ashfields: £99.35.

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