Jason Beattie in the Daily Mirror reports on yet more ideologically driven cuts by the coalition: “Deprived boroughs in Liverpool, London, Manchester and Middlesbrough, will lose ten times more from the government than the ten richest according to research. Britain’s 10 worst-off areas will suffer the biggest council cuts – as some rich Tory authorities get budget rises, research shows.
Deprived boroughs in Liverpool, London, Manchester and Middlesbrough, will lose ten times more from the government than the ten richest.
The reason lies in funding formulas used by the Tory-led Government which hits Labour-held areas hardest.
These local authorities will have their budgets slashed by an average 16.9% during this Parliament, but Tory-controlled councils will lose just 6.6% and Lib Dem councils, 7.8%.
But Communities Secretary Eric Pickles is hitting worst-off areas harder.
Liverpool will lose 27.1% in funding from 2010-15, Hackney in London, 27%, Manchester City Council, 26%, Middlesbrough, 24% and Birmingham, 23.3%.
But Tory-run Wokingham, one of the richest areas in England, will get a 1.1% rise and Education Secretary Michael Gove’s council of Surrey Heath will receive a 0.9% increase in funding.
Other councils serving the seats of Cabinet ministers will also do well.
Justice Secretary Chris Grayling’s local council Epsom and Ewell will enjoy a 3% increase, Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt’s Waverley council is getting a 1.3% rise and Defence Secretary Philip Hammond’s Runnymede, 0.6%.
On average councils in the ten most deprived areas will have cuts of 25% but councils in the ten richest areas will only lose 2.5%, according to the figures compiled by Labour and Newcastle City Council.
Council leaders are already cutting libraries, road maintenance and youth clubs and will struggle to maintain vital services such as social care.
And the harsh spending cuts are being felt in cities with the most children living in poverty.
A worrying 38% of kids in Manchester live below the breadline – 33% in Liverpool. In Wokingham just 9% of children are living in poverty.
Shadow Communities Secretary Hilary Benn said: “These figures are shocking. They show the direct impact of David Cameron and Eric Pickles’s unfair policies.
“The Government claims that those with the broadest shoulders must bear the biggest burden, but they are doing the exact opposite and hitting the poorest communities hardest.”
“One Nation Labour will ensure that future funding of vital council services is done on the basis of need.”
But local Government Minister Brandon Lewis claimed: “The coalition government has delivered a fair settlement to every part of the country – north and south, rural and urban, metropolitan and shire.”” (http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/council-cuts-britains-ten-poorest-3091450#.UuooenlU9Zi)