WIRRAL Council has been accused of squandering taxpayers' cash after it was revealed £1.3m has been forked out on consultants and interim managers - with two temporary bosses pocketing more than £180,000 each.
The revelations came as spending on services in Wirral is set to be slashed by £130m over the next three years amid an outcry over Government cuts.
Town hall bosses insist budgets are being carved to the bone - yet at the same time a firm of outside consultants has been paid more than £660,000.
The disclosures by the opposition Tory group follow the Labour-run administration setting out its annual spending plans on Monday.
Their budget came with a council tax hike of nearly five per cent along with £45m of savings to be made this year and the introduction of car parking charges at country parks.
Figures released by the Conservatives show:
£188,192 for a programme manager.
£181,471 for a second programme manager.
£139,080 for an interim head of transformation.
£665,760 to management consulting company Capita.
£185,000 to two companies to provide economic and legal advice to set up a joint venture property company.
Tory group leader Cllr Jeff Green said: “Spending millions of pounds on consultants, interims and contractors while blaming the Government for funding shortfalls is breath-taking hypocrisy from council leader Phil Davies.
"Time and time again he has told us there is no money to spend on services - yet he can spend a total of £1.3m on these five items alone.
"It’s time he started being straight with the people of Wirral about the choices he is making.
"I believe this money should be used for the services that matter to our residents so instead of having a magic circle, we have a council that works for everyone."
A spokesman for the local authority said: "This council has to save more than £100m over the next four years.
"To achieve those savings without implementing blunt cuts to services, we have to completely redesign almost every service we provide.
"To do this well, you need specialist, expert support.
"This is a short-term, one-off investment and will bring about massive long-term financial benefits."
Councillor Davies has been asked for a response.