A PRIVATE function with caterers and silver service and the pre-determination of a deputy mayor has led a councillor to label his council as ‘disgraceful’.
Liberal Democrat Councillor Steve Hammond is angry at Gosport Borough Council after finding out a decision on the new deputy mayor has been made before a council meeting.
The councillor who represents Bridgemary North said: ‘The Mayor’s Making public ceremony was held today and there is a private luncheon that was held after and before the event I looked at the table names and it had Kathleen Jones down as Deputy Mayor elect.
‘The previous Deputy Mayor elect was Patrick Bergin and he lost his seat on May 3 and the current Deputy Mayor elect is now due to be decided tomorrow at the council meeting.
‘Even though the Conservatives have a majority and it is likely she will be chosen they are making a mockery of the system by having it on a name tag already.
‘She is now the Deputy Mayor elect as of yet and so should not have a name tag saying so.
‘I think it is disgusting the rules are being flouted in Gosport.’
Cllr Hammond also took issue with the private function being held to celebrate Tory Councillor Diane Furlong’s new mayoral role.
He said: ‘The public mayor making ceremony was tea and biscuits and then after they had a private function with silver service and caterers for 41 people which I think is disgusting at a time when there are public cuts.
‘The budget that was put aside for the mayor this year is £5,000 and it seems a large chunk has gone on this so they can drink alcohol and eat nice food.
‘Everyone is being asked to cut back and the council is spending money on themselves.
‘I think it is a disgrace.’
Deputy Leader of the council, Councillor Graham Burgess said: ‘If Councillor Hammond was a good councillor he would have attended the mayor making ceremony this morning.
‘He was just snooping around.’