Brent councillors voted to increase their allowances by two per cent following recommendations from an independent panel.

They approved the recommendation that all members should receive a pay rise, taking the basic allowance to £12,484 – an increase of £244 from 2019/20.

Additionally, the chairman of the audit and standards committee’s additional special responsibility allowance (SRA) will jump from £1,500 to £5,000.

And the leader of the opposition – currently Conservative councillor Reg Colwill – will receive a £2,000 increase to their SRA taking it to £8,000.

Some councillors voiced their opposition to the suggestion, with Cllrs Abdirazak Abdi, Anton Georgiou and Robert Johnson among those who said they could not support it in light of recent budget cuts and tax increases.

Cllr Georgiou said: “At the same time (the council) has approved a budget that increases council tax by 3.99 per cent, we’re sitting here for an increase in allowances once again.

“It doesn’t sit well with me, I think (others) should be commended for voting with their conscience and it’s an absolute disgrace that we’re discussing this.”

Others responded that councillors hardly take on their roles for the money while some might rely on their allowances to compensate for the time spent carrying out their duties.

Cllr Tom Miller explained he has missed out on additional pay due to council responsibilities while Cllr Mary Daly noted that everyone’s situation is different.

She added she would donate her allowance increase to charity and suggested others who are able to do so could follow suit.

The basic uplift was recommended following a review by the Independent Renumeration Panel (IRP) and is in line with the Local Government Pay Settlement.

Several councillors called for a change to the system, which currently requires them to verify their pay.

Cllr Matt Kelcher said: “I don’t think we should have to come back each year to vote on our allowances.

“It’s a terrible flaw in the system in the same way that MPs in parliament have to vote on their own salaries.”

He suggested that decisions on allowances should be accepted in line with those on the council staff payroll.

“If they get inflation, we should get inflation as well. If they don’t, we shouldn’t either,” he said.

“This way we end the bickering, we end the point-scoring, the grandstanding and it’s accepted as an independent process.”