Financial crisis 'would fell Telford & Wrekin Council in 11 days'

Council services in Telford & Wrekin would grind to halt within 11 days in the event of a financial catastrophe, according to the ruling Labour group.

Council services in Telford & Wrekin would grind to halt within 11 days in the event of a financial catastrophe, according to the ruling Labour group.

Councillors claim the previous Tory-led council raided the reserves to fund a pre-election council tax freeze last year.

But Conservative leader Andrew Eade rubbished the claims.

He said the actual available reserves were two-and-a-half times more than Labour say.

Labour say the council’s usable reserves have fallen by 55 per cent since 2007, which means in the event of a catastrophic financial event, the council could only afford to maintain services for 11 days. The national average is 40 days.

Councillor Bill McClements, cabinet member for resources, said: “This news is deeply worrying and I am shocked and appalled that the last administration raided council tax reserves before the elections last May.

“This at a time when we are in the worst economic recession for decades. It was clearly an attempt to buy the election and the people of Telford & Wrekin saw through it.

“This is not the total investments of the council, but the amount of money the council could use immediately should it need to cover a major event or emergency.”

He said in 2007/8 the council had £8.3 million in reserve, but in 2012/13 it will be just £3.7 million. But Councillor Eade said the actual figure was £9.3 million.

He said: “It seems to have taken the Labour administration nearly nine months to arrive at this ludicrous and untrue claim as balances available are £9.3 million. In addition, the Conservative administration put aside £11 million into reserves, £5 million of which is now being used by the Labour group in their current budget proposals."

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Comments for: "Financial crisis 'would fell Telford & Wrekin Council in 11 days'"

Stealth Elf

Why are this Labour lot so desperate to be proven wrong. They should take subsidies when they are offered to them and not punish the ordinary people for their stupidity. When has T & W ever needed vast sums of money to cover for an emergency. They talk such undeniable rubbish.

DevilsChair

Someones being irresponsible here - Is Mr Eade trying failing to tell the public the whole of it, treat em like dummies - they don't need to know - it might scare them into doing something about it

Rather people warm and safe thinking that his government hasn't been trying to wreck the democratic front-end of public services for over a year now?

wonkotsane

What hypocrisy from Labour - they used a third of the council's reserves in the lead up to the previous election to keep council tax down!

wonkotsane

In March 2007 the Labour administration used £2.3m (a third) of the council's cash reserves to plug a gap in its pre-election budget rather than make the necessary cuts in spending that would have left the incoming Tory administration with a sustainable budget. They tried to buy our votes with our own money and left a big hole in the council's finances and now they have the hypocrisy to criticise the Tories for doing the same thing!

pete

have you read these cllrs and their cohorts comments ? What a load of tosh . This Labour council needs to grow up anyone can see the doomed politics of this argument, especially the unison members whose jobs are going ,will £8m be enough to pay their support?

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