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Council spends £3.3m on consultants

Created on 28/08/2018 @ 11:14
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By Gareth Williams, Local Democracy Reporter

Powys County Council has spent more than a million pounds a year on consultants over the past three years, it can be revealed.

A Freedom of Information (FOI) request submitted by the Local Democracy Reporting Service shows our local authority has splashed out £3.3m on consultant fees since 2015.

Over £18m has been spent by eight Mid and North Wales councils, with Powys coming in second behind Anglesey which has spent £9.5m since 2015.

Anglesey's spend, which is more than the other seven authorities combined, has been largely blamed on substantial projects such as Wylfa Newydd – with the outlay set to be repaid by the developers.

The island’s MP, Albert Owen, described the figures as ‘alarming’ considering households are facing a rise in their council tax bills.

The £18m total covers anyone taken in from an outside body to advise the authorities on various matters.

According to a Powys spokesperson, its spend was necessary to provide expertise on issues that the authority does not possess within its ranks.

“Powys County Council uses external consultants for one off, ad-hoc pieces of work where particular expertise or experience is required that the council does not have in-house, a spokesperson said.

“They can also be used if the council requires an independent evaluation or assessment to be made. Information about the use of consultants and a list of expenditure is published on the council’s website.”

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