Birmingham MPs will today use the budget debate to protest at the Government's £100 million 'Birmingham Bombshell' of unfair cuts and tax rises hitting the city.
They will argue that the Government has promised a fairer funding deal for Birmingham, but has refused to introduce this for yet another year, resulting in more unfair cuts.
The 'bombshell' - £113.8 million in total - is made up of:
- £98 million of cuts to the government grant to the city from short-changing the council budget. The Government admits Birmingham needs a fairer funding formula- but is refusing to introduce it until 2016/17, losing the city millions
- £5.5 million of tax rises through the social care precept, forced on Birmingham through the under-funding of social services. The Government admits more needs to be spent on Birmingham's older residents, as the number of older citizens rises - but is refusing to provide the funds, forcing the council to introduce a new 'social care precept' - an additional council tax charge to be used for solely for adult social care services.
- The west Midlands Police Service is suffering a £10 million cut in real terms, and Birmingham tax payers are having to pay an extra £5 million in council tax because of it, paying more for less.
Liam Byrne MP said: "The battering of Birmingham has to stop. Today we reveal the true cost of cuts and tax rises to our city. While other councils in the leafy home counties get hand-outs, we get a £100 million bombshell aimed at the heart of our city. We will never forget it."
Jack Dromey MP said: "Birmingham has been hit hard by the biggest cuts in local government history. Local taxpayers, denied fair treatment, are paying more for less. Fighting for a fair deal for Birmingham, we will press George Osborne in today's Budget to put right an undoubted wrong."
Cllr John Clancy said: "Unless the Government acts mow to right the wrongs, even they acknowledge that Birmingham has suffered over the last few years, Birmingham will fall even further behind. The citizens of Birmingham are being short-changed, then asked to dig even deeper into their own pockets to pay for basic services. To remedy this, the time to act is now."