Teignbridge District Council to consider benefits cuts

Teignbridge District Council is to look into potential savings that could be made from reductions in employee benefits.

In a meeting on Monday 29 November, the council will consider proposals that include ending essential car allowances, either only for those who travel less than 1,000 miles per year, or for all staff.

The council will also look at standardising the mileage rate at 40p a mile. Currently, essential users receive different lump sum and mileage rate depending on the engine capacity.

The council intends to introduce an arrangement with a car rental company for employees that choose not to use their own car or who do not own a vehicle.

Teignbridge District Council will also consider cutting sick pay for the first three days of absence in a bid to save around £130,000 a year.

Councillor Alan Connett said the saving is to partly balance the budget and counteract the cuts in grants from the government.

“In part, it is about whether it will deter people from taking time off when perhaps they could work, and in part it is because in the overall round of the council’s budget, I would rather have people in a job, working and receiving a monthly salary, then continue with some benefits, and then have to say to some members of staff ‘I am sorry we cannot employ you anymore’.”

The council will also discuss whether to cut membership subscriptions to a professional body, for which it currently pays about £21,000 a year, and whether annual increments, where an employee moves up a point in the grade structure, should no longer be given, saving around £61,000 a year.

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