THE new Mayor of Kirklees, Mirfield Conservative councillor Martyn Bolt, has vowed to work with his deputy after a row over Wednesday’s civic dinner.
Coun Bolt was guest of honour at the event in Huddersfield, which celebrated his appointment to the top ceremonial post. But when he ruled that the 220 people attending would have to pay £25 each for their meal, new Deputy Mayor Coun Ken Smith led a boycott.
The Labour veteran, who is in line to be Mayor next year, paid out of his own pocket for up to 30 people to go for a curry instead.
Coun Bolt said the pair drew a line under the matter yesterday (Thursday) and said: “That’s history now.
“We’re going to move forward and work together in the best interests of residents in Kirklees.
“It’s not unusual for people with different political views to work together. Since 1995 that is how the Mayoralty of Kirklees has worked.
“And since 2000 there has not been one dominant party on the council. We have a history of co-operation.”
The spat was over Coun Bolt’s decision that asking taxpayers to cough up £5,500 for the civic dinner at a time of austerity was inappropriate. Coun Smith also vowed to draw a line under the issue and said: “I didn’t invite anybody who was going to the Mayor’s dinner, to avoid embarrassment.”