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“Liberal Democrat budget will cut Tory waste to protect the vulnerable and create safer streets and stronger communities” Cllr Chris Stanbra

February 19, 2013 3:42 AM
By Daventry Liberal Democrats

The Official Opposition on Northamptonshire County Council have today unveiled their budget priorities ahead of Thursday's budget setting meeting at County Hall.

Cllr Stanbra said "The Conservatives are making the wrong choices, ripping up Northamptonshire's safety net and making our streets and communities more dangerous. At the same time they are wasting millions of taxpayers cash on vanity projects like their multi-million pound Quango with an office in Brussels and refusing to cut the allowances of top Councillors."

"The Liberal Democrats will restore PCSO funding and switch streetlights back on to create safer streets. Northamptonshire Conservatives broke their election promise on PCSOs and plunged Northamptonshire into darkness. Local people have clearly voiced their concern over these cuts and they must be reversed."

"We will invest £1m in pavement repairs, which have been left to decay under the Tories. The Liberal Democrats will also be investing money to reverse Tory cuts to fire safety checks, road safety and libraries.

"We will also reverse over £2m of the Conservative cuts to preventative services this year, including reversing the whole £1m cut to childrens centres and the £25k to the Afro-Carribean Elders Service. These Conservative cuts are hitting the most vulnerable hardest and removing frontline services from the elderly, the young, those with mental health problems, children's centres and the voluntary sector. Not only are the vulnerable being effected but it is also extremely short-sighted as spending money on early intervention is the only way to get long term costs down for more expensive care services."

"The Liberal Democrats will also be proposing new funds for increasing the recruitment of foster parents and supporting families who adopt, and a 1-to-1 tuition scheme for Looked after Children. The County Council must do everything it can to protect our looked after children, give them a stable home, and equip them with the tools to succeed in the future."

"There are simply not enough foster carers in our County and we need a permanent recruitment function. The pressure on families who adopt is immense, and has led to several breakdowns in recent years. Recruiting more foster carers will also save taxpayers money in the future as we can reduce the number of expensive agency placements."

"We will also introduce new proposals to help those people, particularly the young, who are struggling to find work. We will build on the Liberal Democrat transport fund to help young people not in education, employment or training to get to job interviews and work placements. We will also seek to set up a pilot scheme for job seekers to get work experience by working within the local voluntary sector. This will benefit job seekers as they learn skills, and help to boost our local charities."

"The Liberal Democrats will support the local economy by joining the successful South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership and playing a full role in driving growth in our County. We will invest to promote Northamptonshire to encourage companies to base their businesses here and create jobs locally."

"Northamptonshire Conservatives have mismanaged the finances for years, proven most recently the £2.5m black hole in the school meals service. They have compounded their financial incompetence by wasting money on the beaurocracy, such as the multi-million pound Business Intelligence Division and their huge spend on communications, marketing and executive support."

"This is worsened further still by their steadfast refusal to cut their own allowances and vanity projects, from their multi-million pound Quango with an office in Brussels to the £3180 portrait of the former Chair of the Council. The Liberal Democrats will cut this wasteful spending to provide the support Northamptonshire residents need and deserve. "