Government slammed over delaying funding announcement for councils

Labour responds to the Government’s postponement of announcing provisional funding for councils for the next financial year

Member of Parliament for Portsmouth South Stephen Morgan, and Labour’s Communities Secretary Andrew Gwynne MP, have slammed Ministers as the announcement disappoints local authorities around England, who earmarked the date to consider future spending projects from government.

Tory James Brokenshire MP has issued a written ministerial statement announcing he is postponing the provisional local government settlement due to the Brexit debate in Parliament.

Responding, Stephen Morgan MP said:

“I am very disappointed Ministers have delayed the local government settlement we were all expecting in the House of Commons this week. The last thing local government needs right now is more uncertainty.

By 2020, local authorities will have faced a reduction to core funding from the Government of nearly £16bn since 2010. That means that councils will have lost 60 pence out of every £1 the Government had provided to spend on local services. Next year, 168 councils will receive no more core central government funding at all as more and more services are cut, whilst council tax goes up and up.

I’m really worried about what this means for us in Portsmouth. Tories and Lib Dems cuts have gone too far affecting the services we all rely on.

With our city’s budgets stripped, and services slashed, we can’t go on like this. I will continue to lobby the Government until we get proper funding for Portsmouth’s services.”

Andrew Gwynne MP, Labour’s Shadow Communities and Local Government Secretary, added:

“Theresa May’s weakness has completely immobilised the Government.

The Tories are so trapped in a crisis of their own making over their botched Brexit negotiations that they are neglecting the needs of the country. Having delayed the introduction of several key policies, it’s clear that the Prime Minister is in office but not in power.

Over eight years, the Tories have cut central government funding for local authorities by 50 per cent, leaving our councils on the brink of collapse and public services at breaking point.

We need a functioning government that will end Tory austerity and rebuild Britain for the many not the few.”