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New Norwich unitary team meets

PUBLISHED: 10:26 01 April 2010 | UPDATED: 17:16 30 June 2010

The new team which will oversee the creation of a new 'super council' for Norwich has met for the first time - but the amount of allowances they can claim has already sparked controversy.

The new team which will oversee the creation of a new 'super council' for Norwich has met for the first time - but the amount of allowances they can claim has already sparked controversy.

The political make-up of the implementation executive - which will steer through the transformation to a unitary council with extra responsibilities for services in Norwich - was rubberstamped at a meeting of Norwich City Council on Tuesday.

However, all but one of the Liberal Democrat group opposed an independent panel's recommendation that will mean the 18 members can collectively claim up to £187,000 during the executive's lifetime ahead of the unitary council being formed next April.

The implementation executive will consist of 18 councillors and an independent panel into the special responsibility allowances recommended that the leader should be entitled to £15,000, the deputy leader £12,000 and each member £10,000.

That will be on top of the allowances which city councillors can already claim for their usual City Hall work, for which £347,900 is budgeted.

Lib Dem leader Brian Watkins said it sent out the wrong message, when the memory of the MP expenses scandal was fresh in the public's mind.


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