UKIP Stretford & Urmston

UKIP Stretford & Urmston

Chairman's Blog

Blog 3: Taking the easy option?

 

Trafford Council have announced its proposed budget strategy for the next three years and have highlighted a number of areas where they hope to make savings. The target is to cut a further £42 million pounds over the next three years on top of the £113 million already ‘saved’.

 

The public have been presented with Proposals at a glance that the Council is hoping to save money or generate income, such as increase Council Tax by 1.99% (in addition to the ‘ring-fenced’ 2% increase for adult social care), increase and add parking charges to Council owned car parks, introduce a collection charge for green bins, Save on recycling/waste costs and remove funding for School Crossing Patrols.

 

However these changes do not account for all the measures being taken by the Council. At the recent Budget Consultation held at the Town Hall in Stretford, Council Leader Sean Anstee was challenged about the proposed cuts to child and adult social care, and the potential damaging impact to Children, the care system and morale of the key workers. Councillor Anstee’s response was that these concerns were not for ‘public consultation’. Which leads us to ask – What else is the Council keeping from us? Such as, how many Trafford residents are aware of the fact Council workers currently have to take 3 days unpaid leave a year (approximately a 2% pay cut)?

 

It leads me to ask ‘Have the Council used the contentious subject of School Crossing Patrols to distract from other serious measures being taken?’ We could be duped into thinking all is OK should the Council back down from the proposed cuts to the School Crossing Patrols, like they did two years ago.

 

Trafford’s Conservative Council loves to ‘brag’ about the fact its Council Tax is the lowest in the Greater Manchester area. Maybe it’s a vote winner? But are they and us taking the easy option? If the services needed for Trafford cost more than we are paying, then why isn’t the real cost being covered? Are we being short-sighted and going for short term gain at the risk of long term pain?

 

Should the Council be highlighting the essential needs of the community, particularly what is needed for both child and adult social care and the benefits the services bring? Again the easy option is being taken as we are duped into thinking there is an increase in funding due to the 2% ‘ring-fenced’ for adult social care, when the reality is there are more cuts.

 

Maybe we should all be prepared to play our part in tackling the situation and be prepared to pay for what is needed. The Council should look at ways to enable us to do this with minimal impact to our budgets and also protect those most vulnerable in our community. For example, most people budget monthly with their income and expenditure, so if the council was to move to taking our Tax over 12 months instead of 10 months, it could afford to increase taxes, but we, the tax payer, would not notice the increase.

 

Is it time to tackle these tough decisions with a different approach to austerity?

 

Mike Bayley-Sanderson

Chairman

UKIP Stretford & Urmston

12/1/2017

 

UKIP Stretford & Urmston is a fully constituted branch of the UK Independence Party (UKIP).  Mike Bayley-Sanderson is the branch chairman.  All material on this part of the website is copyright UKIP Stretford & Urmston 2016/17.