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He’s paid £107k for attacking firefighters but he can’t turn up for critical meetings

Brian Coleman is the Tory politician who runs London’s Fire Service. He is paid over £107,000 for being a London politician, more than three times the £33,000 average wage of a London firefighter, yet he still fails to turn up for negotiations when he has agreed to do so on TV News. Perhaps her couldn’t fined a cab? Even though he has claimed over £20,000 for using taxis.What exactly do Londoners get for this? One cut that’s overdue!

Mr Coleman’s salary comprises £26,000 as leader of the fire  authority, £53,439 as a member of the London Assembly (to be uprated for inflation) and £28,052 as a cabinet member in the London Borough of Barnet.

In addition, he can claim expenses — although last year, he was the only London Assembly member to refuse to voluntarily publish details of his expenses. We can see why: we do know that he has claimed at least £20,747 in taxi fares alone since 1976 — £1,873 from the fire authority over the last 18 months (plus £4,700 in other travel), and from the GLA £10,344 in 2006/7, £8,231 in 2007/8 , and £350 since. Figures are known for neither his first six years on the London Assembly nor the first five on the fire authority, nor for any of his time on Barnet Council.

He gets the odd perk too, free lunches, dinners, and the odd gift. Included on the list of those declared are lunch and two dinners (estimated value £140) with John Shannon, CEO of AssetCo who have been providing “cover” during the strike, and who also gave him a very nice Christmas hamper from Harvey Nichols (estimated value £350).

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