Caerphilly County Borough Council (CCBC) has spent over £28,000 on its mayoral car since 2015.
A Freedom of Information (FOI) request by the Tax Payers Alliance, found that CCBC spent more than any other council in Gwent on its car that transports the council’s mayor, leader and cabinet members.
The Tax Payers Alliance is a pressure group and think tank that campaigns for reforming and reducing public spending.
CCBC has spent a total of £28885.29 on its Ford Mondeo since 2015, with £19,110.69 spent on leasing and £8609.55 spent on fuel.
Responding to the information obtained, which revealed local authorities throughout the UK spend a combined total of £4.5 million on mayoral cars, John O’Connell, Chief Executive of the TaxPayers’ Alliance, said: “Taxpayers are tired of hearing local authorities say they have no money left when there are still instances of excessive spending.
“40% of councils didn’t lease or buy cars and we would encourage Caerphilly County Borough Council to do the same by encouraging civic leaders to always use the cheapest form of transport available. Every penny wasted on excessive travel expenses is money that could be going towards social care or bin collections.”
A spokeswoman for Caerphilly County Borough Council said: “We do not have a vehicle which is exclusively used by the Mayor, but we do have an official car which is used for a range of different business purposes, including by the Mayor, the Leader, Cabinet Members and senior officers of the authority.
“Journeys are often shared using the official car and this can be more cost effective than using alternative forms of transport.”
CCBC will switch its car to the Kia Optima, an electric vehicle, from the beginning of September. It predicts the move will save the authority an estimated savings £1,800 per year.
Cllr Dave Poole, Leader of CCBC, said, “Caerphilly is a sustainable local authority and it is important that we lead by example, so we welcome the opportunity to have a cleaner, greener way of getting around the county borough for official duties.
“Our efforts do not stop there and we will continue to explore new ways of making our whole fleet of council vehicles more efficient to help reduce emissions and reduce our carbon footprint in the future.”