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The Unison union, which represents many council staff, has added to the criticism of Lincolnshire County Council for its £22,000 catering bill for lunches during full council meetings.
Spokesperson Helen Stokes says some of her members are having to use food banks and spending such as this is astonishing.
Lincolnshire County Council is defending how much it spends on councillors lunches during full council meetings. A two course meal, usually a roast and pudding, is served up during the meetings which happen four times a year.
The Taxpayers' Alliance has criticised Lincolnshire County Council for spending around £17 per head on lunches for its councillors when they attend full council meetings.
Spokesman Robert Oxley says local authorities are supposed to be saving money and questions whether they can be trusted to get services right if they can't make the right decisions on lunches.
Lincolnshire County Council has admitted spending almost £22,000 on lunches for councillors attending meetings since 2009. A total of £21,940 was spent catering for the 77 councillors at 17 full council meetings. That works out an average of £16.76 per head. Here is a breakdown of the figures:
- 2009-2010: £6942.77 for 5 meetings = £18.04 per head
- 2010-2011: £6235.79 for 5 meetings = £16.19 per head
- 2011-2012: £4832.43 for 4 meetings = £15.69 per head
- 2012-2013(so far): £3929.44 for 3 meetings = £17.01 per head
- TOTAL SINCE 2009: £21,940.43 for 17 meetings = £16.76 per head
The council says it is written into the constitution that councillors should be fed in County Restaurant on such meeting days but a review of catering costs is currently taking place.