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Monday, 21 April 2014

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We’ll cut council ‘fat cat’ pay, vows UKIP at launch of Carlisle elections campaign

The UK Independence Party is pledging to cut the “fat-cat” pay of council officials.

UKIP election launch photo
Michael Owen, centre, with UKIP candidates and supporters

UKIP will field 11 candidates in the Carlisle City Council elections on May 3 in a bid to win its first seats on the hung council.

It launched its campaign at Bitts Park yesterday buoyed by a national YouGov poll that puts support for UKIP on nine per cent, one point ahead of the Liberal Democrats.

Michael Owen, chairman of UKIP’s Carlisle branch and a candidate in Hayton, was scathing of the way the Conservatives have run the council since 1999 and their Labour predecessors.

He said: “I’m fed up of seeing hard-earned money wasted on silly projects.

“The Conservatives are on record as saying how prudent they are. Yet they squandered millions on Carlisle Renaissance.

“They spent £750,000 on [improvements to] Castle Street.

“It looks attractive but when you’re broke you don’t spend money on that sort of project. Where are their priorities?

“As for Labour, they took out a £15m loan [in 1995], which will have cost £40m by the time it is repaid. It’s absolutely absurd.”

While the Conservatives have pledged to freeze council tax for two years, UKIP would go further and cut it.

The party is also committed to cutting the pay of senior council officers.

Mr Owen singled out chief executive Jason Gooding as an example.

Dr Gooding’s salary of £96,627 a year is £8,000 less than that of his predecessor Maggie Mooney. But Mr Owen said: “That’s still a lot of money for what is essentially a civil service admin job.”

He believes UKIP’s best chance of winning seats is in Conservative strongholds such as Wetheral and Stanwix Urban.

If it did make a breakthrough, and UKIP held the balance of power on a hung council, Mr Owen would not be drawn as to which of the main parties it might back.

He added: “We’d support the ones that proved to us they had common sense.”

UKIP’s regional organiser, Dr Fred McGlade, attended the campaign launch.

He believes that voters no longer see UKIP as a single-issue party, campaigning against Britain’s membership of the EU.

He said: “Our support is increasing all the time.

“We are moving in the right direction.”

Have your say

I'm starting to get a bit fed-up of reading posts accusing A of being a councillor, B of being a councillor and 'attack posts'. They are not conducive to the smooth running of the boards or considered debate.

Therefore, from now
1. ANY posts deemed to be an attack on an individual will not be released. No editing will take place.
2. ANY posts that claim or suggest a contributor is a councillor will not be released.
3. ANY posts submitted by anyone WE suspect of being a councillor will not be released. We hope any councillors who participate here will use their real names and not hide behind the veil of anonymity.

The terms for commenting will be amended accordingly.

Ian
Online editor

Posted by Ian on 23 April 2012 at 20:32

For BM - http://www.ukip.org/media/pdf/UKIPlocalManifesto2012.pdf you can also check Facebook: UKIP Local Carlisle. It is the policy of UKIP to considerably reduce the allowances of ALL councillors and to do with the money exactly what you suggest. ie create new jobs. Hope this helps.

Posted by carliol on 23 April 2012 at 13:51

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