COUNCIL leader Jonathan McColl praised West Dunbartonshire Council for what he described this week as having “successfully managed affairs within budget”.

In a joint statement with council chief Joyce White and resources boss Stephen West, they said last Thursday: “The financial results show the council’s finances in a fairly healthy position and, considering the ongoing significant financial pressures being faced, we have successfully managed our affairs within the budget set and financial objectives prescribed.

“This is a satisfactory outcome and reflects well on both the efforts and professionalism of management, budget holders and on the council’s financial management and monitoring procedures.”

The comments follow the publication last week of council accounts by Audit Scotland.

The report also revealed Cllr McColl in the year ended March 31, 2018, took in £32,114 in salary, fees and allowances as council leader – almost £10k more than any other member.

Labour group leader Martin Rooney was second with £22,197, and Jim Brown and John Mooney were joint third with £21,017. Provost William Hendrie collected £20,623.

In total in 2017/18, £460,545 in remunerations were paid out – £5k less than in 2016/17.

Senior employees’ salaries were also revealed in the report, with Ms White picking up £127,698, which included £4,426 for her duties as returning officer.

Director of transformation and the public sector, Angela Wilson, collected £108,741, including £1,881, for election work. Richard Cairns, director of regeneration, was paid £106,860 in 2017/18.

In 2017/18 there were 24 staff departures at a cost of £547,463, compared to 46 who left in 2016/17 at a cost of £1.5 million. There were no compulsory packages in this or the previous year.