The local papers were full of letters this week critical of Stroud MP Neil Carmichael for comments he made about public service cuts during a House of Commons debate. Basically Neil Carmichael reckons public spending cuts are not as bad as many of us think....this is despite the district council facing one of the biggest percentage funding reductions in the county - plus the massive cuts at the County.
Photo: Randwick woods November
During a backbench debate at the Communities and Local Government Committee in Westminster Hall, London, Mr Carmichael said: "Total spending power for front-line services in my area has not been cut as significantly as the honourable gentleman is suggesting." He was responding to Labour MP Clive Betts, who said there was an irony in giving councils greater spending freedom but less cash.
See here details of march in Stroud on Sat 29th Jan when over 500 people are expected.
The district council's grant will be cut from £6.5million to £4.7million over the next two years, down 28.6%, with more to follow. The county council must save £108million over four years which means libraries, youth clubs and jobs are under threat. On top of this we've seen the benefit cuts, VAT increase and a whole host of public services effected...it does seem to be a very insensitive comment made by our MP - and with views like that he can hardly have fought very hard for Stroud's settlement - see here.