I underline to the hon. Gentleman that we have seen that wage growth but there has also been employment growth. Three million jobs have been created under the Government and the Red Book forecasts the creation of 800,000 more.
The important measures in Monday’s Budget that backed our public services, including the NHS in its 70th year, that cut income tax for millions and increased the national living wage, and that ensured that we are open for business and investing in our future, deliver our promise. The Budget delivers for families and communities and provides a major boost for the quality local services on which we all depend.
When I was appointed to this role, I said that I could not be more proud to represent those communities and the dedicated people working so hard on their behalf in local government, and I meant it. I am under no illusion about how challenging it has been for councils to deliver in recent times as they contributed to helping us to put the economy back on its feet. In recognition of that, we have given local authorities more control over the money they raise, for example, through our plans for increased business rate retention from 2020. We know that the pressures on services have been growing, including around social care.