Sheffield’s Labour Council have been accused of wasting taxpayers’ money. The claim comes as information released by the Council reveals that the Labour run Council are set to spend nearly £500,000 of taxpayers’ money on trade union reps – including an overspend of £136,000.
The Labour Council currently use taxpayers’ money to pay certain council staff to undertake trade union duties instead of their actual council role. The cost of this scheme to the taxpayer was planned to be £353,000.
It has now been revealed that the Council is predicted to overspend on these roles by £136,000 – so that’s nearly £500,000 of taxpayers’ money spent on trade union conveners.
14 union reps have had their salaries increased. Some salaries have nearly doubled.
Sheffield Liberal Democrats have vowed to scrap these taxpayer funded roles to fund things such as social care instead.
Liberal Democrat Leader Cllr Shaffaq Mohammed said:
“The crucial question here is what would you spend £136,000 on? Would it be social care? Would it be on road safety? Would it be on libraries? For many people, spending taxpayers’ money on trade union reps would be very low on their priority list.
“The Labour Council cry crocodile tears over budget cuts. And then they spend hundreds of thousands of pounds on something that trade unions should be paying for.
“The long-standing Council subsidies of trade union convener has been a hugely controversial issue, particularly in recent times when the City Council has cuts services to young people and the elderly within the city while continuing to allocate over £350,000 of Council tax payers money to pay for the salaries of City Council employee to carry out work solely for the Trade Unions.
“It is totally scandalous that the Council Tax payers of Sheffield are now faced to with a further bill totaling £136,000 because the Labour run City Council has now decided to almost double the salary of some of the City Council employees undertaking full time Trade Union work, some staff currently being paid £17,700 are now set to receive between £29,000 to £33,000 to continue their current work.”