Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Tories Delighted At Labour “U-Turns”

THURROCK Tories are claiming victory for a number of changes that the ruling Labour administration made last week with leader Garry Hague signalling a period of robust opposition between now and May.

Following a review of the alternative Budget savings put forward by the Conservative Group. the Labour Cabinet agreed to withdraw their planned saving of £75,000 for ‘street cleaning and cleanliness of streets’ and to halve their planned cuts of £100,000 for ‘street lighting’ and £20,000 to the ‘locking of parks and cemeteries’ and ‘autumn horticultural planting’.

Councillor Garry Hague, Leader of the Conservative Group, said: “We are pleased that the Labour Cabinet has agreed our recommendation not to cut street cleaning which we know is one of the key services valued by residents. Although they are reducing the cuts originally planned, we remain concerned that they are still progressing their plans not to lock a number of parks and cemeteries and to reduce the autumn planting schedule.

It is very concerning given the lack of community facilities in many areas that they still plan to remove play equipment in ten play areas. This will be a huge blow to many local communities. I am also concerned that Chafford Hundred library is going to have its opening hours drastically reduced when a small reduction in library hours could have been shared across all libraries.

“In conclusion I am very disappointed by the Labour Cabinet’s decision which is going to impact adversely on many communities. We gave them costed and viable alternatives to save key environmental, safety and community facilities and they have disregarded much of what we put forward. I am particularly disappointed that, when I asked them at the Cabinet meeting, the Labour Cabinet would not show leadership by committing to voluntarily giving up 5% of their allowances to help save some of these much valued services.”


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