Town halls in Tory constituencies gain funding - while those in North-East suffer

The Northern Echo: Michael Gove - funding increase for his local town hall Michael Gove - funding increase for his local town hall

TOWN halls in the constituencies of some Conservative ministers have GAINED funding, a new analysis shows – while North-East councils suffer.

Six members of David Cameron’s frontbench team are in seats where councils are enjoying boosts to their ‘spending power’ over this Parliament.

They include big-hitters Chris Grayling, the Justice Secretary (Epsom and Ewell), Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt (Waverley) and Education Secretary Michael Gove (Surrey Heath).

All three have seats in the Tory heartland of Surrey. In the case of Epsom and Ewell council, spending power will rise by three per cent, over five years.

In stark contrast, every North-East council is struggling with swingeing cuts – the latest announced only last month – that have put services under fresh threat.

The steepest loss of spending power - combined funds from council tax, retained business rates, the New Homes Bonus and Government grants – will be in Hartlepool (down 24.5 per cent).

But Middlesbrough (down 24 per cent), Redcar and Cleveland (20.5 per cent), County Durham (17.3 per cent) and Stockton-on-Tees (17.2 per cent) are not far behind.

Durham County Council must slash another £23m from its spending in 2014-15, taking total savings since 2010 to £155m and on course to hit £242m by 2017.

The Labour-run authority is consulting on the closure, or privatisation, of five care homes, four years after shutting seven other homes.

Tom Blenkinsop, Labour MP for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland, said it was clearer than ever that ministers had favoured their own Conservative areas.

He said: “It looks to me that the department for communities and local government (DCLG) gives out funding on the basis of who knocks on the door first.

“And if that person is a minister wearing a blue rosette then they get the money.”

Ministers have insisted they have delivered a “fair settlement to every part of the country – north and south, rural and urban, metropolitan and shire”.

However, they are seeking to replace what they call the “begging bowl” system, with rewards for councils that build new homes and attract new firms.

But the New Homes Bonus favours larger homes built in the South, often the same areas that find it easier to attract extra business investment A DCLG spokesman said: “Local government finance now puts councils in the driving seat, rewarding them with more income for supporting local enterprise, building more homes and backing local jobs.”

Overall, the DCLG figures show the ten most deprived local authorities in England – including Middlesbrough - will lose ten times as much ‘spending power’ as the ten richest.

Hilary Benn MP, Labour’s local government spokesman, said: “These figures are shocking. They show the direct impact of David Cameron’s unfair policies.”

The Northern Echo:

Comments (12)

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9:24am Thu 30 Jan 14

David Lacey says...

Yet another misleading article by Red Rob. Why does the Echo let him get away with this rubbish? Why is it rubbish? Because the so called rich Tory councils are still getting LESS per head of population than the bloated North East councils.
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The truth is that the people of the North East have been ripped off for years by spendthrift Labour councils whilst frugal Tory councils in the south have cut back on all but essential services.
Yet another misleading article by Red Rob. Why does the Echo let him get away with this rubbish? Why is it rubbish? Because the so called rich Tory councils are still getting LESS per head of population than the bloated North East councils. . The truth is that the people of the North East have been ripped off for years by spendthrift Labour councils whilst frugal Tory councils in the south have cut back on all but essential services. David Lacey

10:54am Thu 30 Jan 14

youcantdenythetruth says...

I agree with David Lacey. Labour councils only know one thing - how to waste vast amounts of public money.
I agree with David Lacey. Labour councils only know one thing - how to waste vast amounts of public money. youcantdenythetruth

10:55am Thu 30 Jan 14

markdarlo says...

Labour councils have been greedy over the years and got money on the sly. The conservative ones I bet have been careful with their money. Labour coming up with any excuse in the book. At the end of the day THEY are the ones who got us in this mess in the first place! I've always been a labour supporter until the last few years. They lit their own fires years ago, now we're counting the cost. If you don't have the money, don't spend it!
Labour councils have been greedy over the years and got money on the sly. The conservative ones I bet have been careful with their money. Labour coming up with any excuse in the book. At the end of the day THEY are the ones who got us in this mess in the first place! I've always been a labour supporter until the last few years. They lit their own fires years ago, now we're counting the cost. If you don't have the money, don't spend it! markdarlo

10:55am Thu 30 Jan 14

John Durham says...

David Lacey wrote:
Yet another misleading article by Red Rob. Why does the Echo let him get away with this rubbish? Why is it rubbish? Because the so called rich Tory councils are still getting LESS per head of population than the bloated North East councils.
.
The truth is that the people of the North East have been ripped off for years by spendthrift Labour councils whilst frugal Tory councils in the south have cut back on all but essential services.
If I were thinking of building a private health or care home for the elderly I think I'd choose leafy Surrey rather than Easington. But who will provide for those who need social care in the North?

In a nutshell why councils in the North need more funding than those in the South East.

And how anyone in the North can support the Government on this is beyond me.
[quote][p][bold]David Lacey[/bold] wrote: Yet another misleading article by Red Rob. Why does the Echo let him get away with this rubbish? Why is it rubbish? Because the so called rich Tory councils are still getting LESS per head of population than the bloated North East councils. . The truth is that the people of the North East have been ripped off for years by spendthrift Labour councils whilst frugal Tory councils in the south have cut back on all but essential services.[/p][/quote]If I were thinking of building a private health or care home for the elderly I think I'd choose leafy Surrey rather than Easington. But who will provide for those who need social care in the North? In a nutshell why councils in the North need more funding than those in the South East. And how anyone in the North can support the Government on this is beyond me. John Durham

10:58am Thu 30 Jan 14

John Durham says...

markdarlo wrote:
Labour councils have been greedy over the years and got money on the sly. The conservative ones I bet have been careful with their money. Labour coming up with any excuse in the book. At the end of the day THEY are the ones who got us in this mess in the first place! I've always been a labour supporter until the last few years. They lit their own fires years ago, now we're counting the cost. If you don't have the money, don't spend it!
Why North Yorkshire and a host of other Tory councils are also at odds with this government I suppose?
[quote][p][bold]markdarlo[/bold] wrote: Labour councils have been greedy over the years and got money on the sly. The conservative ones I bet have been careful with their money. Labour coming up with any excuse in the book. At the end of the day THEY are the ones who got us in this mess in the first place! I've always been a labour supporter until the last few years. They lit their own fires years ago, now we're counting the cost. If you don't have the money, don't spend it![/p][/quote]Why North Yorkshire and a host of other Tory councils are also at odds with this government I suppose? John Durham

11:40am Thu 30 Jan 14

Ceej69 says...

What about Willy Hagues Richmondshire seat? That's in the North East...
What about Willy Hagues Richmondshire seat? That's in the North East... Ceej69

12:02pm Thu 30 Jan 14

sineater says...

So labour councils are run by silly children who spend their pocket money straight away,or is it punishment for refusing to vote tory,i think the later is the case. People like David Lacey wonders why people here refuse to vote tory,and you get your answer in the tories actions,they are vicious and uncaring,totally discounting the fact that in labour areas there is a higher % of people that need the councils help,especially when the tories are in powe.,At present,councils are having to dip into funds to help people left in poverty by the so called bedroom tax,and also with other cuts,but of course the tories don't care about what happens to poor people,most don't vote tory,so why should they care what happens to them.
So labour councils are run by silly children who spend their pocket money straight away,or is it punishment for refusing to vote tory,i think the later is the case. People like David Lacey wonders why people here refuse to vote tory,and you get your answer in the tories actions,they are vicious and uncaring,totally discounting the fact that in labour areas there is a higher % of people that need the councils help,especially when the tories are in powe.,At present,councils are having to dip into funds to help people left in poverty by the so called bedroom tax,and also with other cuts,but of course the tories don't care about what happens to poor people,most don't vote tory,so why should they care what happens to them. sineater

12:30pm Thu 30 Jan 14

Haji el Maveric says...

David Lacey is a self-appointed Tory cheerleader who knows nothing.
David Lacey is a self-appointed Tory cheerleader who knows nothing. Haji el Maveric

12:34pm Thu 30 Jan 14

loan_star says...

Red Rob must have been desperate this week, after all the news about the economy recovering, employment at its highest level etc etc! He's been awfully quiet about those things while hes been scurrying around trying to find something to beat the government with. Desperate times for him I think!
Red Rob must have been desperate this week, after all the news about the economy recovering, employment at its highest level etc etc! He's been awfully quiet about those things while hes been scurrying around trying to find something to beat the government with. Desperate times for him I think! loan_star

1:37pm Thu 30 Jan 14

David Lacey says...

I see we have a short message from another twerp with a silly name. Hargey Bargey or something. It is a well constructed and carefully researched contribution from a learned philosopher. Thanks.
.
As for the suspiciously named "John Durham" - people in the leafy south live longer than they do in the drug and drink riddled, obesity plagued North East so the demand for care is greater there.
I see we have a short message from another twerp with a silly name. Hargey Bargey or something. It is a well constructed and carefully researched contribution from a learned philosopher. Thanks. . As for the suspiciously named "John Durham" - people in the leafy south live longer than they do in the drug and drink riddled, obesity plagued North East so the demand for care is greater there. David Lacey

4:10pm Thu 30 Jan 14

sineater says...

Waffle waffle waffle David,i don't see you c omplaining with obesity plagued Eric Pickles who has just been rapped about his biscuit bill !! They l;ive longer there because they get more help,
Waffle waffle waffle David,i don't see you c omplaining with obesity plagued Eric Pickles who has just been rapped about his biscuit bill !! They l;ive longer there because they get more help, sineater

7:49pm Thu 30 Jan 14

darloboss says...

David Lacey says...

I see we have a short message from another twerp with a silly name. Hargey Bargey or something. It is a well constructed and carefully researched contribution from a learned philosopher. Thanks.

another warm welcome to a new contributer from crazy lacey
David Lacey says... I see we have a short message from another twerp with a silly name. Hargey Bargey or something. It is a well constructed and carefully researched contribution from a learned philosopher. Thanks. another warm welcome to a new contributer from crazy lacey darloboss

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