Mayor of Grantham’s budget slashed

Mayor of Grantham Linda Wootten
Mayor of Grantham Linda Wootten
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The budget used to run the Mayor of Grantham’s office has been slashed by more than £10,000 following the annual meeting of the Grantham Charter Trustees on Tuesday.

Current mayor Councillor Linda Wootten told the meeting that the mayor should make sure every penny is well spent.

The meeting was told that there was a projected underspend of between £10,000 and £12,000 this year and there was £7,000 in reserves.

The trustees agreed on a precept for 2017/18 of £44,850, a reduction of more than £10,000 on this year’s precept of £55,600.

Coun Wootten said: “I am well aware it is public money that pays for this office and I have managed the budget. As mayor you are the chairman of the Charter Trustees and as we are given a precept like a parish council we should adopt a principle of accounting for every penny, which in theory does happen, but I 
believe each mayor should be personally responsible for staying within their own budget and that we as Charter Trustees should scrutinise more.”

At the meeting a sum of £23,000 was voted for to cover salaries, £5,000 less than was spent in the previous year.

A sum of £3,000 was finalised for hospitality – a figure nearer £4,000 has been spent on hospitality in the last two years. A sum of £2,500 has been set aside for the mayor’s car to cover fuel and insurance. The car is provided free of charge by Kia.

Mayor-elect Coun Mike Cook urged some caution on reducing the budget. He told the meeting: “We need to be careful we do not put things in place which will inhibit the future mayor.

“If we end up with a surplus we can put that into our reserves and that can be used for specific items.”