Labour councils such as the one that rules Sunderland need to “admit their own failings” rather than blame the Government for increasing council tax to pay for social care, says a Tory chief.
Local authorities in England will be allowed to bring forward council tax increases totalling 6% over the next two years.
Portfolio holder for health, housing and adult services Coun Graeme Miller, said the Government’s funding cuts have left cities such as Sunderland “struggling to cope”.
But Conservative Councillor Robert Oliver has hit back, saying: “Social care has been in need of reform for many years with the Labour Party promising change in 1997, but never delivering during 13 years in Government,” said Coun Oliver.
“The decision to allow councils to increase Council Tax to pay for social care is a welcome step to provide short-term help and will raise about £200million more.
“The precept for social care can increase from 2% to 3% if councillors agree, but they must also be mindful that many residents will not want excessive rises in local taxation.
“This is on top of the £20billion to be spent on care for the elderly and disabled throughout the country, which is only available because the economy is growing.
“Labour councils such as Sunderland need to admit their own failings in terms of the low council tax base rather than blaming central Government for every failing.”