Councillors opt to keep £90k free meals

Councillors opt to keep free meals in Halifax Town Hall

Councillors opt to keep free meals in Halifax Town Hall

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Calderdale Council has been accused of a u-turn on plans to scrap their own free meals.

Councillors have voted to keep current provisions, which give them free taxpayer-funded meals in the Halifax Town Hall canteen, despite the previous Conservative administration’s plans to close the cafe down.

Fish and chips is one of the treats on offer to councillors in the canteen

Fish and chips is one of the treats on offer to councillors in the canteen

Conservatives say the plans, which were tabled in March this year, would have saved £90,000 a year. However, upon gaining control of the Council in May, Labour announced that they would reverse the decision.

Meals in the canteen usually cost between £2-£4 but are free for councillors whenever they attend a meeting in the town hall, with treats such as fish and chips, meat pie, pizza and chicken in black bean sauce on offer to diners.

Leader of the Calderdale Conservative group coun Scott Benton, who admitted to having used the free meal service before, said: “It is the official Conservative position that we should scrap these meals.

“In terms of who uses it, it’s cross party at the moment, but we believe that the taxpayer should not pay to feed councillors.

“At a time when Labour are cutting back on vital services across Calderdale they seem to think that reinstating free councillor meals is a priority. Such decisions are indicative of a council leadership which has the wrong priorities and shows a complete lack of respect for members of the public whose Council Tax is being wasted in such an appalling manner.”