Birmingham’s 120 councillors are set to have their annual pay frozen for the fourth year running after an independent panel ruled that increases cannot be justified at a time of local authority austerity.
It means that members will continue receive a basic allowance of £16,267, based on three days a week work once the report of its Independent Renumeration Panel has been rubber stamped.
Birmingham City Councillors are the best paid in local Government, but the panel also recognised that as well as running Europe’s largest local authority, they also have some of the largest wards in the UK.
Panel chairwoman Sandra Cooper said: “The Panel is very mindful of the fragility of the current economic situation, and the ever increasing pressures on the public purse following this year’s comprehensive spending review and budget settlements.
“It is forecast that the financial pressures will continue across the public sector. Times are hard on many local communities and public services.”
Despite this she said councillors work for their pay taking tough decisions over future service delivery with ever decreasing budgets.
She said they arrived at their view following interviews with councillors and council officers.
Special responsibility allowances for committee chairmen and women, political group leaders and cabinet members will be considered in a separate report due in February 2014. Ms Cooper warned that some roles may see their pay increased with others cut to reflect changes in responsibilities – although it is unlikely the overall cost will change.