THE amount of money the county council has spent on saying goodbye to its former employees has risen sharply in the last year.

Council taxpayers learnt this week how much of their money has been spent in termination payments to the authorities staff.

Final salary payments along with pensions and holiday back pay, increased by nearly half a million pounds to £1.708m.

The eye watering amount was this year given out to 138 members of staff, through restructuring and retirements.

A document published by Cumbria County Council said: “Termination payments made to employees totalled £1.286m and related to 98 staff in 2018/19.

"The termination payments made to employees in this year, totalled £1.708m and related to 138 staff."

At Friday’s county council audit and assurance committee meeting no questions were raised over the costs.

The budget for the year, including the severance payment updates, were approved unanimously by councillors.