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Sunderland Council spent £83,228.27 on foreign trips last year

Some fascinating data on the Daily Telegraph's website comparing councils on a number of matters including their spending on foreign travel. The survey was carried out by The Bureau of Investigative Journalism and is due to be covered on tonight's Channel Four News. Freedom of Information requests showed councils have spent more than £500 million in the past three years on redundancy costs and other pay-offs. It also showed £3 millon spent on private health care and detailed spending on foreign travel as well as comparing sickness rates.

Grant Shapps, Local Government Minister, says:

“The systematic abuse of public money is both breathtaking and unforgivable.

“It seems that junkets, jollies and golden goodbyes became a perk of working in local government during Labours time in power.

“What makes this discovery all the more alarming is that this was happening as hardworking households had to cope with council tax doubling.

“If councils cut out this colossal waste then they should be able to protect frontline services.”

Sunderland spent the most of foreign trips last year £82,228.87. (Somerset on £57,185.32 came a long way behind, followed by Kent on £56,044.84, Birmingham on £52,250.00 and Aberdeen on £43,077.66.) Amon London councils the biggest spender on jnkets last year was Waltham Forest - on £20,056.89 - followed by Haringey - £10,260.

Other interesting data is the list of ten councils with the highest number of employees on sick leave for over six months:

Suffolk County Council                     208

Cornwall Council                               198

Torfaen County Borough Council        191

Rotherham Metropolitan Borough        175

Aberdeen City Council                       169

Manchester City Council                     167

Caerphilly County Borough                  145

Aberdeenshire Council                        122

 Newport City Council                          117

Fife Council                                       115

While here is a list of the ten councils with the highest sickness absence rates last year:

Aberdeen City Council                   15.58 

Walsall Metropolitan                      14.65
Borough Council

Lewes District                                13.96

Doncaster Metropolitan                   13.57
Borough Council

Salford City                                   16.57

Birmingham City                             15.56

Bridgend County                             13.41
Borough Council

Craven District                                13.37

Met Borough                                   13.32

West Lothian                                  13.30



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