Five years ago Bexley
Councillor Gareth Bacon found himself
headlined in the London Evening Standard as the highest paid Councillor in
London. In Bexley he was Deputy Council Leader and Cabinet Member for Finance,
Chairman of London’s Fire Planning Committee and a Greater London Authority Member in his own right.
He was raking in £108,000 of public money every year. One by one he gave up some
of the jobs until only the GLA Membership and Bexley Councillor for Longlands remained.
No sooner was he elected MP for Orpington a month ago than the Bonkers’ post bag reminded me of Gareth Bacon’s financial good fortune and it has happened again today so maybe it is appropriate to set the record straight.
The GLA Membership will be retained until the scheduled elections next May. Until then his salary will be reduced.
In Bexley Gareth will resign from being a ward Councillor on a date timed to provoke a May election. To do so earlier would likely cause a by-election in the immediate future and that would cost Bexley Council - and taxpayers - a lot of money.
If it can be run on the same day as the GLA election the additional costs will be negligible. It makes a lot of sense and the decision does not deserve the criticism I heard again today.
I think Gareth Bacon did a pretty good job for Bexley especially after the Conservative victory in 2006. I love the little video in which he shows up Mayor Sadiq Khan for the lying numbskull that he is. I never tire of looking at that one.