The Thick of It


Thursday, March 31, 2011

Poor to pay for the Tories

I love Channel 4's Fact Check. IT provides independent analysis of political rhetoric and gets behind the crap and tells it like it is. Like most politicians find it difficult to do. 

Housing Minister Grant Schapps suggested a few weeks ago that councils that make the biggest cuts must be badly managed and those who cut less must be more inefficient. Tosh. What that ignores is that councils like Islington have to pay out more to those on benefits and get less tax in return from council tax payers (as there are fewer of them) than in a place like Richmond. Richer areas have more council tax payers and few benefit recipients. That means Richmond receives a smaller central government subsidy than somewhere like Islington. Thast is quite basic and something I learnt very early on at university. 

Fact Checker sets this and Schapps straight. Councils like Islington and Manchester are facing far more cuts than just that to the main central government grant. This means they have no choice but to cut more severely than councils in better off areas. They say:

"it’s clear that deprived areas are worst affected.

"As a poor inner-city authority that gets more Government money than council tax, Manchester’s spending power is down 8.8 per cent in this financial year and 6.7 per cent in 2012/13. In Trafford it’s only 3.8 per cent this year and 3.4 next year."

The poorest pay most under the Tories. Despicable.

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