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Diana responds to Hull City Council budget

Hull North MP Diana Johnson has responded to the Budget agreed by Hull City Council today by slamming the “hypocrisy and opportunism” of Hull Lib Dems.

Speaking after Hull City Council’s Budget for 2013/14 was agreed, Hull North MP Diana Johnson said: “These cuts in local services and the increased council tax have been forced on Hull City Council by the grossly unfair treatment of Hull from the Lib Dem-backed Coalition Government.

“Recent figures showed that Hull will lose £228.36 for every person between 2010 and 2015. Meanwhile, Surrey Heath is cut by only £24.54 per head over the same period.

“Hull, the country’s tenth most deprived area, has the 25th highest level of Coalition cuts, but Surrey Heath, the 324th most deprived area out of 326, is in 322nd place in the cuts league table.

“Even after every possible efficiency saving, the savage level of cuts in central government grant being imposed on Hull by the Coalition means that councillors cannot avoid painful decisions across a range of local services and further damage to the Hull economy.

“Many people in Hull will be disgusted by the sheer hypocrisy and opportunism of the Lib Dems over Hull’s Council budget. Without Lib Dem support in Parliament this unfair funding settlement would not be imposed on Hull.

“Moreover, people in Hull can remember the Lib Dem Council Budget in 2011 in the first year of the Coalition. Worse still, the Lib Dem Council in Hull was attacking local services years before the Coalition Government was formed. This was in the years when Hull was getting annual Budget increases under the previous Labour Government. For example, I remember the Lib Dems stopping Hull getting free swimming, increasing sports club charges and axing Hull’s pioneering free healthy school meals policy.

“Hull Lib Dems claiming to support Labour’s policy on the Living Wage was especially dishonest given that their party has often opposed even the National Minimum Wage!

“The Council Budget agreed today takes effect in April. This is the same month as Coalition benefit changes mean the poorest paying towards Council Tax bills and 8,000 millionaires will get an average windfall of £107,000 from the cut to the 50p tax rate.

“This gross unfairness is why Labour is running the Fair Deal for Hull campaign, which people can support through the petitions section of my website at www.dianajohnson.co.uk.”

The Hull North MP recently launched the Fair Deal for Hull petition campaign against the unfair concentration of central government spending cuts on the most deprived areas.

The Fair Deal for Hull petition is available for anyone in Hull wanting to help collect petition signatures from the petition page of Diana Johnson MP’s website at www.dianajohnson.co.uk or from her office on 01482 319135.

An online e-petition supporting the Fair Deal for Hull campaign has also been launched at http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/45719.

ENDS