Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Lib Dems ignore Council Tax warnings

The Full Council meeting last Thursday agreed the budget and set the City Council part of Council Tax.

I have blogged before on the financial problems faced by the City Council this year, but argued that in the current economic situation the Council had to find significant cost savings, and do everything they could to keep down the burden of Council Tax.

To achieve these aims, the Council should be maximising the use of its resources, reviewing budgets starting from zero, and focusing on the core services that everyone relies on.

The Liberal Democrats ignored warnings from all opposition groups, and again put up their part of the Council tax by 4.5%, despite the recession and the lower expectations for inflation.

In doing so, they failed to make any serious attempts to make long term reductions in the core costs of providing services, have failed to consider the possible effects of the recession adequately, and general reserves are expected to plummet - the 'debt free' Council may even have to borrow to finance its capital spending program.

In short, the Lib Dems have failed to tackle the problems facing the Council, and agreed a 'hope for the best' budget that will add to the burden of Council Tax for years ahead.

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