Thurrock Labour leader: "Conservative claims of a £5 million budget overspend are, simply, untrue".

THE leader of Thurrock Labour who ran Thurrock Council for six years until late May has reacted with anger over Tory claims that their regime overspent.

Cllr John Kent was responding to comments made by Tory cllrs Shane Hebb and Rob Gledhill on the financial challenges facing them. The two entered into a conversation where they referred to a £5 million overspend in the budget under Labour.

Cllr Kent said: "Whilst demand led services such as child social care have been severely stretched by the large number of unaccompanied children seeking asylum in Thurrock – and the failure of government to honour their commitment to meet the costs of these children – the overall council budget was not overspent in 2015/16.

"Something they should be well aware of as it was reported at their July cabinet meeting.

Of course, Thurrock Conservatives have made similar claims year in year out and every year the council’s auditors have reported small surpluses.

"I am confident that, when the auditors present their report later this month, we will have independent confirmation of another small surplus for last year."

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