The Labour Leader of Sheffield City Council today hit out at the Liberal Democrat Party for failing to Stand up for Sheffield and act as a check on the Conservative-led Government.
As the Council prepares to set its budget, which contains cuts of £55 million in the coming financial year, Labour claim that the coalition Government’s cuts are disproportionately effecting the most disadvantaged areas of the country.
They have revealed that research looking into cuts to Council budgets shows that cuts are hitting northern towns and cities hard at the same time as some areas of the wealthy south are receiving almost no cuts at all.
This research shows that the level of cuts per person in different local authority areas are as follows:
Sheffield -£123 per person;
Doncaster -£144 per person;
Barnsley -£111 per person;
Newcastle upon Tyne -£144 per person;
Manchester -£190 per person.
Richmond-upon-Thames -£4 per person;
Wokingham -£1 per person;
Windsor & Maidenhead -£5 per person;
East Dorset £0 per person;
North Dorset -£3 per person.
By 2015/16 Sheffield City Council will have £170m less to spend on services than it did in 2011/12, which means that for every £3 that the Council had to spend on services in 2011/12 the Council will only have £2 to spend by 2015/16.
Labour fear that the Government’s cuts agenda is going to get worse for many years to come, noting that the Autumn Statement published by the Chancellor in November 2011 extended the ‘period of austerity’ for two years beyond the period covered by the 2010 Comprehensive Spending Review, meaning that spending reductions are now set to continue up to March 2017.
Labour Leader, Julie Dore said; “The implications of this Government’s cuts agenda for Sheffield, and other towns and cities in the north of England, are potentially more devastating than that of the Thatcher administration of the 1980s.
“The Liberal Democrat Party have completely failed to deliver a fair deal for Sheffield, instead deciding to support the Tory policy of hitting northern towns and cities with greater levels of deprivation hardest in favour of prioritising funding for areas in the wealthy South.
“Whilst people in Sheffield would expect this sort of behaviour from a Tory Government, it’s shocking the Tories have only been able to do this because of the support of Nick Clegg and the Liberal Democrats.”Other news from Sheffield Labour