The Grantham Guzzler is here to stay . . . at least until 2012

Off Diary''New car for Mayor ???

Off Diary''New car for Mayor ???

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GRANTHAM’S mayoral car - dubbed “The Guzzler” for its poor miles to the gallon - will stay with us for at least another year.

Grantham Charter Trustees met to discuss the future of the controversial Chrysler 300C CRD and decided scrapping the lease would cost more than seeing out the final 13 months.

Grantham’s current mayor Rob Hearmon said: “We looked at the facts and figures and came to the conclusion to see it through.

“It would have cost a lot of money to buy out - slightly more than seeing it out to its conclusion. So we decided to carry on with what we’ve got.”

Cancelling the lease on the car, which began in 2007, would have cost around £6,000, while buying it outright would have meant a further £13,000 outlay.

Former mayor and member of the charter trustees Ray Wootten backed the decision to continue with the lease.

He said: “It would have been an unacceptable cost to the people of Grantham so we are better off waiting until the lease runs out and looking at other options.

“With people making cutbacks we should lead by example.”

When the lease does expire a decision will have to be made on whether to renew the lease, get a new car or do away with the mayor’s car altogether.

Coun Hearmon said: “There is a question of do we need the car? And the answer is probably no. But if the mayor turns up to a function on the number three bus, what does that say about Grantham?”

The Charter Trustees have cut their annual budget for the coming year from £60,000 per year to £58,000.

l Does the mayor need a big car? Is £58,000 for the Charter Trustees money well spent? Tell us what you think: comment@granthamjournal.co.uk