Sutton Council is spending £92,000 on furnishing councillors' homes with a high-tech arsenal of BlackBerries, laptops and broadband internet connections.

The executive decided that giving remote access to the council network would "empower" members to respond more promptly to constituents' concerns.

But Conservative opposition councillors are declining the offer after calling the lavish computers a "chronic waste of taxpayers' money".

Councillor Terry Faulds, the Tory finance spokesman, said there were cheaper ways to improve communication when all 54 members already have personal email accounts.

His complaints come after Sutton Council "fat cats" received double-figure pay rises while hitting householders with above-inflation tax increases and a £35 charge for garden waste collection.

Coun Faulds said: "New broadband connections would be set up in councillors' homes, with state-of-the-art laptops, plus docking stations, monitors and duplex printers.

"Conservatives will not be joining the Lib Dems in this extravagance. Taxpayer confidence in this council's ability to spend public money is ebbing away fast."

After a trial in January last year, selected councillors apparently found it easier to manage workloads and request support documents.

Councillor Colin Hall, the deputy leader, said Sutton was one of the few London boroughs lacking remote access via home computers.

"We want to ensure councillors are accessible to residents, making it easier and quicker for them to get a response back," he said.

"The Conservatives' leader and deputy leader didn't hesitate to snap up council-provided handheld devices, which are no cheaper than laptops. I shall be contacting them immediately to find out when they will be handing these back."

BlackBerries will initially be offered only to post-holders, saving £19,800. But it will cost £52,000 to update computers every four years and another £10,000 to cover training.

Councillors must also sign a new acceptable use policy precluding their relatives logging on to the computers, use of Sutton email addresses for personal messages, and the publication of party-political literature.