Local Government Finance
Mr Nick Raynsford (Minister of State (Local and Regional Government), Office of the Deputy Prime Minister; Greenwich and Woolwich, Labour)
I welcome the hon. Gentleman to the Dispatch Box and look forward to many further interesting debates. He has mentioned his local authority, which originally proposed a council tax increase in excess of 30 per cent. yet has now managed to get it down to low single figures. Would he like to reflect on why that happened? Was it because the Government said that we would get tough if authorities went for unreasonably large increases? I do not think the reduction had much to do with the legislation to which my hon. Friends have referred.