Local Government Finance

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 5:25 pm on 5th February 2019.

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Photo of Andrew Gwynne Andrew Gwynne Co-National Campaign Coordinator, Shadow Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government 5:25 pm, 5th February 2019

My hon. Friend, who is a doughty champion of the people of the city of Coventry, is absolutely right. What we have seen today from this Secretary of State is smoke and mirrors. He can talk about a spending power increase across local government, but that is predicated on every English local authority increasing council tax by the maximum level possible—an eye-watering, inflation-busting increase. We know that not every local authority can raise sufficient money by council tax alone, which is the reason behind the revenue support grant. A 50% cut to the revenue support grant of my hon. Friend’s city of Coventry is a big cut by monetary standards. Coventry’s council tax base does not allow the city council to raise anything like enough money to plug that gap.