Opposition Day — Local Government Funding — 28 Mar 2018 at 17:31
That this House believes that local government has severely suffered as a result of almost eight years of brutal and devastating cuts; notes with concern that the Institute for Fiscal Studies estimates that between 2010 and 2020 local government will have had direct funding cut by 79 per cent; is concerned that the top ten most deprived councils in England are set to see cuts higher than the national average, with nine on course for cuts more than three times higher than the national average; believes there is a risk that services and councils are reaching a financial breaking point; calls on the Government to act on the warnings of the National Audit Office and initiate a review into the funding of local government to ensure that the sector has sustainable funding for the long term and to immediately provide more resources to prevent more authorities following Conservative-run Northamptonshire into effective bankruptcy; and further calls on the Government to report to the House by Oral Statement and written report before 19 April 2018 on what steps it is taking to comply with this resolution.
“town halls are hoarding billions in their piggy banks”.
“This is a wholly unsustainable position, and has already led to speculation about the long-term futures of four other counties which have used significant cash reserves in recent years: Surrey, Lancashire, Somerset and Norfolk.”
“the ability to look at local taxes such as land value tax”
“councils are reaching a financial breaking point”
“initiate a review into the funding of local government to ensure that the sector has sustainable funding for the long term”.
“the traditional model of chief executive, with a wide public role and a significant salary, is unnecessary and can weaken the ability of a council’s political leadership to set a direction through elected members.”
“local government delivers vital services for the communities they serve-services that many of us take for granted, provided by dedicated, often unsung councillors and officers in places that we are all proud to call home. As such, as I have said before, local government is the frontline of our democracy and deserves the resources it needs to do its job,”
“deliver truly world-class services.”-[Official Report, 7 February 2018; Vol. 635, c. 1561.]
“more shocks to what is already a shocked system.”
“Local government and county councils, which have had the steepest financial challenge of any part of local government, have done extraordinarily well to help national Government start to restore the country’s public finances. We are all finding now that we really are eating into the bone”.
“there are so many unfunded pressures that are building up across the piece in local government...The elastic is fully stretched.”
“The extra income this year will help offset some of the financial pressures they face but the reality is that many councils are now beyond the point where council tax income can be expected to plug the growing funding gaps they face.”
“Councils are showing signs of increasing financial stress. They are finding it increasingly difficult to identify and deliver savings and more have drawn on reserves than in previous years to fund change programmes and routine service delivery.”
“put the needs of our most vulnerable residents first, to improve our communities and bring people together in a peaceful and cohesive society and to boost the life chances of our young people by giving them the best opportunities we possibly can.”
The House divided:
Ayes 238, Noes 0.
Votes by party, red entries are votes against the majority for that party.
What is Tell? '+1 tell' means that in addition one member of that party was a teller for that division lobby.
What are Boths? An MP can vote both aye and no in the same division. The boths page explains this.
What is Turnout? This is measured against the total membership of the party at the time of the vote.
|Party||Majority (Aye)||Minority (No)||Both||Turnout|
|Lab||226 (+2 tell)||0 (+2 tell)||0||87.8%|
|Paul Sweeney||Glasgow North East||Lab (minister)||tellno|
|Martin Whitfield||East Lothian||Lab (minister)||tellno|