Our report into council pensions today has exposed a shocking number of councillors who have opted into the local government pension scheme. Yes, you thought it was just for council staff, but no, since 2003 councillors have been given the opportunity to opt into the scheme. Already given generous allowances, paid for by the kind British taxpayer, they’re sinking their snouts further into the trough in taking a publicly funded pension too – for what is only meant to be a part time role, surely?
Reasonably, under data protection law, we didn’t get the details of who in each council chamber had opted into the local government pension scheme – which takes £1 in £5 of council tax. But as is your right as taxpayers and constituents, if you feel you want to know whether your councillor is taking a pension out of your pocket you can write to your councillors here to ask them if (a) they are on the local government pension scheme and (b) if they do whether they declare it in their register of members interests. It's our money and it's our right to know what the politicians are doing with it!