Give local services a fighting chance: Labour issue budget challenge to other parties

Besi Besemar February 22, 2015

Labour fight to stop savage cuts to the Pride Parade, the Mayoralty and the Women’s Refuge.

Cllr Warren Morgan: Leader of Labour and Cooperative, Brighotn and Hove City Council
Cllr Warren Morgan, leader of the Labour and Co-operative group, Brighton and Hove City Council

THE Labour group on the city council are challenging the Greens and Tories to put aside party politics and unite around a budget that is best for Brighton and Hove at the annual Council meeting to set the budget on Thursday, February 26.

Issuing the challenge, Councillor Warren Morgan, leader of the Labour and Co-operative group, said: “Our proposals would set the council tax at a 1.9% increase that people can afford, freeze all parking charges for 12 months, keep all children’s centre services running for another year, and maintain funding for voluntary groups. I am urging the Greens and Tories to back this positive compromise to give the new council to be elected in May, and the services residents rely on, a fighting chance.” 

Labour’s proposals would also scrap the Greens’ One Planet Living team and use the funding to keep public toilets open. Money would be taken from the Communications budget to support the Mayor’s community and charity work, currently under threat.

Councillor Morgan added: “The Green referendum proposal and the Tory freeze plan would each mean a loss of another £1m from council services, which we think is better spent in the community on things residents need. Voters can elect a new council in May, but for now we should put the city first.”

Labour proposals will restore all the money being cut from women’s refuge funding, half of the money being cut from Able and Willing, the council’s design and print service which employs people with learning disabilities, and a small grant to help the summer Pride parade develop as an international tourist attraction to bring visitors to the city.