Friday, 18 March 2011

Council Tax Frozen and Key Services Protected

Council Tax in Reading is not rising for the first time in many years as a result of the decisions taken by Liberal Democrat and Conservative Councillors. 
We have delivered on our pledge to the public which we agreed via our Coalition Agreement last May.
At a time when household budgets are under huge pressure this is one bill that will not be going up over the next year giving some respite to families and elderly people in particular.
And despite the need to find over £18 million pounds worth of savings from the Council's budget, unlike some other councils :
  • we have not closed any libraries or leisure services
  • we have protected care to vulnerable children and adults.
  • we have increased financial support to voluntary groups
  • we have increased the number of trees in the Borough
  • we have launched a new warden service to tackle environmental crime
  • We have increased support to carers
  • we are continuing to improve Council homes and estates
  • we are continuing to take action to reduce empty homes - a discretionary service
It is worth pointing out that the Labour opposition group on the Council opposed all the above measures and failed to put forward an alternative budget of their own.

A Labour administration would seriously threaten many key services we have sought to protect. Labour have shown time and time again they cannot balance the books and overspends in areas such as social care could break the Council's budget in future years.

Residents in Reading should consider these facts they come to vote in the local elections in May.

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