Cuts and Spending - Ealing Council Leader Responds

Julian Bell defends recent decisions

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“The local Tories and LibDems are speaking as if they have nothing to do with the draconian cuts that are being enforced on Ealing Council by their national parties. This is a deeply dishonest and frankly breathtaking position for them to take.

''Faced with these unprecedented cuts the Labour administration is having to make very difficult decisions. One of those difficult decisions is to decide whether to close the Albert Dane Centre.

''The decision we have to make on the Albert Dane centre is however not just about making savings. It reflects the administrations desire to further the personalisation agenda and deliver care that is up to date.

''The steps we have taken reflect the fact that service users and the disabled lobby have indicated their wish to move away from the traditional institutionalised day care model and use their personal budgets to access a variety of services which will help them to live an independent life in the wider community.

'' In these difficult times we are going to have to change the way we deliver services but we will not leave anyone without an alternative service that they themselves choose and are happy with.

''The school building money is ring-fenced and the requirements for a green roof and electric car power points have been imposed by the GLA. Perhaps the Tories should be speaking to Boris Johnson as well as George Osborne. The Labour Cabinet has already agreed to investigate ways to reduce these imposed costs.

''On Councillor Allowances we have taken the decision to freeze them for the next four years and we will shortly be introducing a further package of savings that will reduce this budget further. It is extremely hypocritical for the Conservative group to be lecturing us on the subject of allowances.

'' Cllr Stacey’s first act in power in 2006 was to raise his own pay by 50%. When we had a chance to act we did, when Cllr Stacey had the chance to act on councillors allowances he awarded himself a massive pay rise.”


October 28th 2010