Cornwall Council yesterday approved a four-year budget plan, which will see cuts of £196 million and the loss of hundreds of jobs. Council tax will rise by 1.97% in 2014/2015, a figure which is just below the 2% threshold which would have led to a referendum on the issue.
The four MK councillors did not support the budget.
We were among thirteen councillors who supported an amendment to seek a council tax increase of 6%, which would have been placed in front of Cornish voters in a referendum. It was our view that the additional £9 million would have partially offset some of the damaging cuts being forced on
Cornwall, for example, in adult social care, childrens services and one-stop-shops/libraries.
We also supported an amendment to safeguard youth provision which was overwhelmingly defeated.
The final budget was passed with 69 voters in favour with 21 votes against. There were a total of 19 abstentions.
During the wider debate around the budget, there was much comment about the disproportionate levels of cuts being imposed on local government by the Coalition government, but among many of the Coalition councillors themselves, there was almost a denial that the cuts had anything to do with their parties!!!