Labour’s leader at County Hall has written to Chancellor Jeremy Hunt calling for a fair deal for Leicestershire in this week’s Autumn Statement.
The letter comes ahead of the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement on 22nd November 2023, in which he will set out the government’s spending priorities. The statement offers an opportunity to reverse the damaging cuts that have left many public services struggling to survive. Since 2010, the Conservatives have repeatedly slashed local government funding, leaving an increasing number of councils warning that they could effectively go bankrupt in the months ahead.
The cross-party Local Government Association have warned that a combination of rampant inflation, rising homelessness, and the increased cost of delivering services such as children’s social care mean councils face a £4bn funding gap by March 2025.
Commenting on the letter, Cllr Amanda Hack said:
“Leicestershire residents deserve better. Since 2010, government funding cuts have forced County Authorities like ours to make painful choices. These have included closing half of our Sure Start Centres, switching off streetlights, massive cuts to road maintenance and recently deciding to end all grants to community organisations. Year after year, representatives from Leicestershire have made regular trips to Westminster to ask for fairer funding. It’s time those calls were listened to. The Conservatives have reduced funding to our area by more than £120 million in real terms since 2010. Today, Leicestershire gets around two-thirds (65%) of the funding we received from the last Labour government.
Unfunded pressures are pushing council budgets to the brink. Local family finances are still recovering from the Conservative government’s disastrous decisions that crashed our economy. The government should take responsibility for funding local services, rather than forcing local authorities to increase council tax bills.
Mr Hunt must use his Autumn Statement to deliver the fair deal that people in Leicestershire deserve. If he can’t do that, the Conservatives should call a General Election and allow the country to vote in a new government with a plan to give Leicestershire its future back.”