Sheffield councillor quits over late rates

Coun Bryan Lodge
Coun Bryan Lodge
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One of Sheffield’s most senior councillors who has overseen collection of council tax and business rates has resigned from his cabinet role after running into arrears with his own payments.

Bryan Lodge, Labour councillor for Birley, said he felt the ‘most appropriate action’ was to quit from his role as cabinet member for finance after falling behind with business rates at his city centre sandwich shop on Division Street.

Coun Lodge said: “My business rates have fallen behind by two months but by the end of October I will have paid these arrears off.

“I have made arrangements to ensure these are maintained up to date in the future.

“However, given the enormous challenge that the council faces in the coming months and years I do not want this issue to detract from the focus that we need to maintain to tackle these challenges.

“I feel that the most appropriate action to take is to step down as cabinet member.”

Coun Lodge has been deputy leader of the council and stood unsuccessfully in the last Labour leadership contest in 2010 after the death of Jan Wilson.

Council leader, Coun Julie Dore, said: “Bryan Lodge has been an excellent cabinet member for finance, dealing with the most challenging financial situation in the council’s history.

“However, he feels it is important that this issue is put to bed.”