Councillors to fund own purchase of iPad or other tablet computer

Apple iPad

Apple iPad - Credit: Archant

Councillors will be equipped with iPads under new measures agreed by a council.

South Cambridgeshire district councillors will be asked to purchase an iPad or other tablet computer to replace the laptops they currently use, the software on which became obsolete in April.

An outlay of £41,000 would have been needed to bring the computers up to scratch, but plans agreed by the council’s cabinet last week mean councillors will now have to provide their own device, or fund the purchase of a new one from their existing allowances.

Cllr David Whiteman-Downes, South Cambridgeshire District Council’s cabinet member for corporate and customer services, said: “The fact is that in April we would have needed to invest over £40,000 in updating laptops and the software on machines as it becomes obsolete. To save taxpayers money councillors will now be asked to fund their own computers which will mean money is not diverted away from providing front line services.”

New software also being introduced for the tablets will mean reports and documents can be created, highlighted and annotated on the device so paper agendas – which currently cost over £2,000 each year to print and post – would no longer be necessary for councillors.