Free meals for councillors reflects badly on Sunderland council

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The Conservative amendment to the motion about free meals for councillors (reported in the Echo on February 1) would have made it compulsory for all councillors to pay for themselves.

Graeme Miller said £5,000 is a relatively small amount of money, but spending anything at all on free meals for councillors reflects badly on the council’s priorities and principles.

It’s hard to see how Labour’s decision to reject my amendment was, as they’re fond of saying, “for the many, not the few”.

In my view, the suggestion that we all pay for the meals was the most constructive and sensible way forward, but some councillors (none Conservative) were more concerned with turning the “debate” into a spectacle than with saving taxpayers’ money.

Nonetheless, and despite Labour voting our amendment down, I am pleased to say that all Conservative councillors who attend these meals will pay for them.

Antony Mullen.

On behalf of the Sunderland Conservative Councillors.