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Ealing and Northfield

Five bouquets for Ealing Labour: Another zero

I have had a couple of weeks off from the blog in the run up to Christmas. There are five days left of the year and in the spirit of Christmas I want to highlight five things that the Labour council has done right this year.

First off the council announced at its last meeting that council tax would be frozen for the fourth consecutive year. This is a welcome respite for residents from rising prices and stalled incomes.

This is also a good Conservative policy.

Since Boris Johnson became London Mayor in 2008 he too has frozen his share of the council tax called the precept. Just before Christmas Boris Johnson announced his fourth successive precept freeze. The precept trebled under Livingstone. The average rise was 13% per year. Who can forget 2003’s 29% rise?

Under the old Labour council there was a similar picture that was only broken with the arrival of the Tories in 2006. Again 2003 was a memorable year with a 25% rise.

It seems that the new Labour council is willing to accept the grants from the “Tory-led coalition” to keep council tax frozen. I hope that Ealing Labour’s new leaf stays turned over for a few years yet.

2 replies on “Five bouquets for Ealing Labour: Another zero”

According to Wikipedia Labour raised the precept by 60% in 1987 not to mention the above inrease of 25%.

I remember having an argument with that twit Cudmore about the need for a legal limit on rises. Was that something to do with the idiot Labour party allowing the reserves to drop to £1M?

Equally however I think that there should be a rise of say 1% especially with inflation being very high here in the UK.We can’t go on cutting and cutting and boast that there have been no rises, which anyway have something to do with the Coalition government grants, but which will be studiously ignored when we have the next local election.
Perhaps Ealing Borough should be reduced in size? What impact do you think it would have if the Western end were cast off to Hounslow and Hillingdon?

George,

To be fair the 25% was driven by some changes in local government finance. But, the then Labour council chose to thrash residents rather than redesign itself to suit the new circumstances. That was in the days when local government chief execs thought that their job was to work out how much the council needed and then simply use the law to extort the cash from residents.

Chopping the borough up would probably expend energy on re-organisation that would be better spent on making the beast more efficient. For my money the boroughs need to be a certain size to achieve economies of scale. 32 London boroughs may be too many. The Westminster, K&C and H&F deal implies that these three LAs are too small. Ealing is the second biggest but probably doesn’t need to be much smaller. London should probably be ten or so bigger boroughs.

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