drone aerial view of town center of Kingston upon Thames, Greater London

Local council leader adds to calls for fair funding after Autumn Statement

Kingston Council has released a statement from its leader, Councillor Andreas Kirsch, further supporting calls that local government is in need of fairer funding, following the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement.

The funding of local government had been a hot topic throughout the build up to last Thursday’s Autumn Statement, delivered by Chancellor Jeremy Hunt. This saw calls from all levels of local government, including the leader of the Local Government Association, Cllr James Jamieson, to ensure that funding of services is protected to provide crucial services for residents.

With approximately four days to consider the positives and negatives of the Autumn Statement, Kingston Council has now released a statement from Councillor Kirsch, outlining the issues he is facing, he said:

“The situation remains critical for councils up and down the country following the chancellor’s Autumn Statement. We are facing rising demand for vital support and spiralling costs from things like energy bills, and government funding is failing to keep pace with the situation.

“Local authorities need a fair funding deal and the government urgently needs to get to grips with how to properly deliver this.

“More than half of everything we spend in Kingston each year goes on providing residents with social care support and these needs are rising call the time. Despite these pressures, practically all of Kingston’s core government funding has been removed. Years of underfunding has seen the government reduce our central grant from £66 million in 2010 to just £4,000 this year.

“While we welcome the extra support announced for adult social care, it is still not enough to meet the increasing needs of vulnerable families in our borough. We need proper funding to protect vital services for residents.”

Considering the national financial situation, if local councillors believe that the funding they are getting is not sustainable, it could leave residents without the vital support and services that they need to get by. This is especially important as we approach the winter months.

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