Sutton councillor given Liability order over unpaid council tax as nine more miss payments
An unnamed Sutton councillor had to be threatened with court over unpaid council tax while nine others had to be reminded to pay up last year.
Figures obtained through a Freedom of Information request, show 10 Sutton councillors missed payments between January 2013 and January 2014.
One councillor had a liability order issued against them and even received a court summons before paying.
Council figures show it sent 16 letters to 10 councillors who failed to pay on time, but Sutton Council said the councillors can not be named and shamed due to data protection rules.
Seven of the councillors who received letters were Liberal Democrats while three were Tories.
One councillor received four reminders, another received three, and a third had to be notified twice.
Seven councillors received one reminder.
Sutton Council uses a computerised system whereby a letter is sent out automatically when a payment is missed.
The figures do not show them to be running up huge arrears, but indicate they failed to pay on time.
A spokesman from Sutton Council said: "None of Sutton’s councillors were in council tax arrears for the financial year 2013 to 2014.
"Councillors are treated in exactly the same way as any member of the public in that, if they miss or partly pay a monthly payment, our automated system triggers a notice to remind them that payment is needed.
"This happened 16 times in the year and the outstanding amounts were subsequently paid."
In October last year three reminder letters were sent out to recover £176, £128 and £256.
In August 2013 two were sent out, with one of them chasing an arrears of £451.
The figures suggest councillors were usually being contacted for a month’s payment, with the amounts tending to range somewhere between £100 and £180.
Andy Silvester, of campaign group the Taxpayers' Alliance, said: "It costs the council money to chase up late payments and councillors should really know better.
"Every penny of avoidable spending unnecessarily puts up local residents' council taxes."
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