The County budgets for failure

The Conservative Independent Coalition that run Oxfordshire County Council pushed through their £64 million pounds cuts package at the budget setting meeting of the Council.

Councillor David Williams, leader of the Green Group on the County Council, said:

“The cuts focused on Adult Social Care are a part of the £265 million pounds cuts package spread over the next 4 years. By a majority of just 3 the Conservatives with the help of 3 Independents were able to ensure their cuts budget was agreed.

“The Green Party moved the most radical alternative budget restoring over £10million pounds worth of cuts in services for the elderly, the sick, the homeless, children, the disabled and the desperately poor. The objective was to protect the front line services for the most vulnerable members of our community by pulling together money from various sources including a very small Council tax rise of just 4.5%. The Green's restoration of the cuts went much further than the £800,000 proposed by Labour and the half million suggested by the Liberal Democrats.

“The Conservative Administration suggested that both the Labour and the Liberal Democrat budgets were merely tinkering with a few thousand pounds being moved about but accepted that the Green budget was do-able and would have a real impact but it would involve a referendum. The Greens were confident that this very smalll increase that would mean only around 23p per week per resident.

“The Green budget was wide-ranging with restoration of grants to Arts Centres, Village halls, the retention of the present Home to School transport systems and the necessary funds for the Citizens Advice Centres. It even included the money to keep rural bus routes open. The Green Councillors called on the other parties to back their stance against the cuts but they voted down the Green plans to restore front line services.”

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