Amber Valley councillor slams budget cuts

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A Labour councillor has expressed concerns after council tax is set to rise, buildings will close and charges for recycling garden waste have been brought in.

At the full Amber Valley Borough Council meeting the council, which is led by the Conservative party, approved to increase Council Tax by over three per cent for the next three years, the possibility of closing the Town Centre Offices at Alfreton, Belper and Heanor as well as bringing in charges for recycling garden waste.

Leader of the Amber Labour party, Councillor Chris Emmas-­Williams, said: “The report highlighted that the Council faces a projected deficit of £3.8 million yet despite this damning fact the Tory group, clearly knowing this, they attempted to bribe the electorate with their council tax reduction.

“The Councils’ finances were in dire straits as we, the Labour group, have been warning them for a number of years and now in a desperate attempt to resolve the situation the new Tory administration are introducing savage increases of excessive council tax rises for a minimum of three years and imposing unilateral charges for garden waste and burials.

“The residents should be asking how was the authority allowed to get into this position and clearly the answer is the pure incompetence of the Tory controlled administration.”

Leader of the Conservative party, Councillor Kevin Buttery said: “My priority is to maintain quality front line services, so we have to look towards reducing the Council’s costs and increase revenue. With these budget proposals, I want to provide this Council and the people we serve with as much stability as possible, so we can go forward together to meet the financial challenges ahead. Our opportunities to do the things we would like to do, and what communities would like us to do, is now somewhat diminished.”