‘Facts’ don’t stand up

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Councillor Robert Oliver needs to read the National Audit Office report on the Impact of Spending Cuts On Councils which states:

“Government funding for local authorities has fallen by 28% in real terms over the 2010 spending review period. This reduction will reach 37% by 2015-16 based on illustrative data from the Department. Metropolitan districts will face the largest fall in Government funding, with a 41% reduction by 2015-16. County council funding, in contrast, will have fallen by 33%”.

Perhaps in his infinite wisdom he can explain how a cut of 41% would affect the finances of any organisation.

Perhaps also he should read the whole report, which also states that the NAO does not believe the Government understand the effects on service and the financial stress that councils are under.

Personally, I think they do but just don’t care.

He says that the last Labour government left the largest peace time deficit when it scuttled out of office.

He may not know that the deficit in 2008 was just over £500million. The bank crash and subsequent bailout led this to rise to £1trillion in 2010. It is also true that a Tory/Lib government was in power for most of 2010 and began borrowing to fund their agenda and swelled this figure.

Since then the “responsible” Tories have added another £600million to the National Debt, which now stands at £1.6trillion.

I fail to see how this can be called good management.

With all the cuts and austerity we should now be swimming in money as we have seen GNP go up and swingeing cuts in all areas. We are not because the money saved has financed tax cuts with the rich being the main beneficiary.

This Government should also be called to account for not collecting an estimated £35billion in tax from companies such as Amazon, Starbucks, Vodaphone et al.

Perhaps Councillor Oliver can also tell us why our council has been treated differently from councils in Witney, Berkshire, Eastleigh etc.

Does he agree with this or is it something to which he turns a blind eye?

His job in a weak opposition, I suppose, is to criticise but his so-called facts do not stand up to scrutiny. How can a £1trillion deficit be called the largest peace time deficit when that of his Government dwarfs it.

Any council can be and, rightly, should be taken to task but for he and his cohorts to stand by while their city is treated unfairly by their Government shows a contempt for the people they were elected to serve.

Richard Beck