Lib Dems force Labour climbdown on ‘Golden Goodbyes’

Southwark Lib Dems have forced a concession from Labour on their controversial ‘Golden Goodbyes’ to departing cabinet members on Southwark Council.

The Labour group introduced these payments in 2016, overruling loud objections from Southwark Liberal Democrat councillors. No other council is the country provides these ‘Golden Goodbyes’, and over £30,000 has since been paid by Southwark Council Tax payers to these retiring Labour politicians.

Despite defending these payments throughout, due to the sustain criticism by the Liberal Democrat opposition and local residents, the Labour-run Council has now decided to remove the ‘Golden Goodbyes’ from those that lose their cabinet posts due to not standing in future local elections. However, all other payments to Cabinet members who have been in place for more than a year will remain in place.

Cllr Anood Al-Samerai, Leader of the Southwark Liberal Democrat Council group said:

‘These payments to Labour cabinet members that Labour introduced during a time of tight budgets have been unnecessary and unjustifiable from the very beginning. We objected to them from the start and have kept on opposing them since. Yes, it’s good that we’ve been successful in getting them scrapped for those cabinet members that choose not to seek re-election, but instead of tinkering with the rules behind these Golden Goodbyes, they should be scrapped altogether.’

ENDS

Notes to editors:

  • The changes to the rules can be found here:

http://moderngov.southwark.gov.uk/documents/g6097/Public%20reports%20pack%20Wednesday%2027-Mar-2019%2019.00%20Council%20Assembly.pdf?T=10

Item 7.2 Member Allowances Scheme 2019-2020

  • The total amount paid out in ‘Golden Goodbyes’ is £30,723.04