Monday, 23 February 2009

£8 Million boost for Ipswich economy

As I blogged a week ago, the Ipswich Tories-like Cameron and his cronies are sticking to their "Do nothing" principles. My Labour colleagues and myself have proposed a budget that will see an £8 million boost to the local Ipswich economy. We will be putting forward our budget plan at the Full Council meeting this Wednesday.

Wonder who the Lib Dems will support- and 8 million pound boost to the Ipswich economy (that will not see a rise in council tax) or -as we all expect - they will support the Tory "Do nothing" plan. Maybe they like seeing more empty shops in Ipswich

The Ipswich economy could receive an £8m boost if proposals put forward by Labour councillors are agreed at the meeting on Wednesday.

Highlights of Labour’s “Budget for Jobs” include:

• a large-scale home energy efficiency programme

• doubling the size of the council’s affordable housing programme

• reversing the cuts in grants to good causes

• a freeze on bus fares

• an investment fund to bring empty properties back into use

• ensuring Ipswich residents and businesses claim the grants and benefits they are entitled to.

The measures put forward would be paid for by reducing the amount of money the council keeps in the bank for a rainy day, bringing forward spending from future years and borrowing at extremely low rates of interest. There would be no increase in council tax and no cuts in services. The council’s Chief Finance Officer, as required by law, has stated that figures are correct and that the council’s remaining reserves (£1.8million) are adequate.Labour Leader David Ellesmere said: “Councils should be at the forefront of protecting their residents from the worst of the economic downturn. Our programme will save jobs, save residents money and help to save the planet. It is just the boost that Ipswich needs.”

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