TRAFFORD Council’s newly elected Labour leader has denied breaking a manifesto promise by accepting a £9,000 salary top up.

Cllr Andrew Western, who recently toppled 14 years of Tory rule at Trafford Town Hall, was quizzed about the extra allowance by Conservative Cllr Michael Young.

During Wednesday’s meeting Cllr Young asked if the leader had adopted his policy and refused the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) pay cheque as promised.

In response Cllr Western argued that he had not made the 2015 pledge because he was not the Labour leader at the time.

“So to answer your question – no – I have not done that,” he said.

“The reason is we were not elected in 2015 – we were elected on the promises we made to the electorate in 2018.

“That programme was to investigate the Amey contract, to save Turn Moss – and many other things that we believe will significantly benefit Trafford residents.

“You can be assured that, unlike my predecessor, (referring to Cllr Sean Anstee) I have no intention of rewarding myself a 30 per cent pay rise on succession of the leadership.”

The pay rise Cllr Western was referring to was, in fact, the GMCA allowance voted in by the then ruling Tory administration.

However, Cllr Young hit back and accused the leader of breaking his pledge for accepting the allowance.

He asked: “Have you deliberately misled voters in pursuit of power – and now that you’ve got it, it’s one rule for you?”

Cllr Western said he had taken a £30,000 pay cut to commit himself to the people of Trafford.

“Unlike others I do not think it is appropriate to award myself a pay rise in order to do that,” he said.

“However, talking about breaking manifesto promises – Cllr Young may want to inform residents why we don’t have weekly bin collections anymore and why the previous council cut school crossing patrols.”