Research by the TaxPayers’ Alliance (TPA) reveals that local authorities are overpaying their staff by millions in mileage allowance payments.
Employees who use their own cars for business journeys are often reimbursed for the extra expense. The HMRC has set an approved amount of 45p for the first 10,000 miles.
The average council rate was 48.92p, and the highest rate is 69p
Local authorities have spent a total of £223 million in mileage allowance payments between 2016-2017. Lancashire council paid out the most at nearly £6.9 million.
This overspending was first highlighted by the TPA in 2011, and the Department for Communities and Local Government advised councils to stop paying above the approved rate in 2012. Since then, only a few councils have adopted this easy money saving method.
John O’Connell, Chief Executive of the TPA, said: “It’s simply not credible for local authorities to plead poverty and raise council tax while paying over the odds for basic expenses, especially when the government has been telling them to rein in these payments for the past five years.
He went on to say: “Councils must continue to root out wasteful spending like this so that they can deliver tax cuts for hard-pressed residents.”