Isle of Wight Constituency Labour Party Vice-Chair, Deb Gardiner, shares this latest news. Ed
Proposals by the Conservative-led Isle of Wight Council to both raise council tax by six percent and also slash £7.5 million from local services have been condemned by Labour.
Labour said the Tory-run council – which is proposing the largest council tax rise for over a decade – and Isle of Wight Conservative MP, Bob Seely were doing the Government’s dirty work in supporting austerity.
Labour Vice-Chair Deb Gardiner said:
“Since 2010, when the Tories were propped up by the Liberal Democrats in the Coalition Government, Councils have been continually hit by austerity and savage budget cuts.
“We now have an unholy trinity of Tory Government, Tory MP and Tory Council so there can be absolutely no doubt as to who is to blame for the cuts that are decimating local services and placing the burden of Conservative austerity onto the shoulders of those can least afford it.
“The failure of Cllr Dave Stewart and Bob Seely to win a fairer settlement for the Island highlights both their ineffectiveness and also the Conservative Government’s dogmatic determination to pursue its reckless and cruel austerity agenda to protect the wealthy at the expense of everyone else.
“The Government has taken a decision to refuse to properly fund vital local services and instead impose a cowardly stealth tax on Island residents through an almost 6% Council Tax increase. The council plans to force people to pay more council tax and get less services in return – in what world is that fair or acceptable?”
Impossible choices, not ‘difficult choices’
Labour welcomed the £500,000 additional funding for Adult Social Care, but added there is still a huge funding shortfall in the service.
“The money is, of course, very welcome but it isn’t nearly enough – and as it was part of settlement for all Councils providing social care in England, it is a bit disingenuous of the MP to claim that he had successfully put the Island’s case.
“One-off funding to finance rocketing demands on social care and forcing up Council Tax is simply not sustainable – this attack on the local government services we all rely on cannot go on. This is no longer about difficult choices, it’s about impossible choices.”