Absent councillor receives thousands in payment for meetings she has never convened
Conservative Cllr Annabel de Capell Brooke has moved to Norfolk and is the worst attending councillor in Northants
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By Sarah Ward
Northamptonshire’s most absent councillor who now lives in Norfolk has received more than £10,000 in allowances in the past six months.
North Northamptonshire Council’s Conservative Cllr Annabel de Capell Brooke, has attended just four of the 19 meetings she has been due to attend and has not been to one full council since the authority started up in April this year. She has only attended virtual meetings, her last online meeting was in July and she has not attended any meetings in person since the authority began.
The councillor for Oundle who also had a terrible track record of attendance when a district councillor in East Northants, moved to Norfolk last month, but has not resigned her position.
Since April she has received £8,333 in basic allowances (receiving £1,047 each month) and she also receives £333 per month as special responsibility allowance for chairing the employment committee - a committee that has never met since the authority began. As chairman it would be in her remit to call the meetings and work with officers on the agenda.
This brings the amount she has received into her bank account from NNC since April 1 to £10,666.
Now the opposition leaders of the Kettering Green Alliance and Labour Party have said she should stand down.
Labour leader Cllr Jean Addison said:
“I think she should go. Anybody with any integrity would say I’m moving and I can’t fulfil this so I’m going to resign.”
And Kettering Green Alliance leader Emily Fedorowycz said:
“I’m pretty sure she will resign. If people are getting paid their salary, then it is important that they are working hard for the public.”
Cllr Fedorowycz is a member of the employment committee that Cllr de Capell Brooke is supposed to chair and says she has not received any correspondence about the committee, which she is disappointed about because she wanted the committee to look at ‘green jobs’.
The council’s Conservative leader Cllr Jason Smithers said last month that he expected Cllr de Capell Brooke would resign when she moved out of the county.
But despite moving a few weeks ago she has not tendered her resignation. The last meeting she attended was a virtual meeting on July 26. If she does not attend another meeting within six months she will automatically be disqualified as a councillor.
NN Journal has put a series of questions to the councillor via voicemail, email and text but has not had a response.
Her attendance, at just 21 per cent, is the worst among all 171 councillors elected to the county’s two unitary authorities.
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