The Conservatives have submitted amendments to the Brighton and Hove City Council budget proposals to support their call for a council tax freeze.
The party said: “Conservatives have launched their 2015-16 budget proposals, the centrepiece of which is a council tax freeze and vital reform to council services.
“Other proposals being put forward by the Conservatives are
- protection of funding for voluntary groups working with vulnerable young people
- protection of funding for respite and short breaks for disabled children and their families
- reforming and modernising the Cityclean refuse and recycling service
- freezing the cost of parking permits for traders and visitors and also freezing charges at the council’s car parks
- keeping vital public toilets open
- continued funding for planting new trees
- saving the city’s historic mayoralty
- additional funding to support the annual Pride Community Parade
- reducing senior management costs including a restructuring in the assistant chief executive’s department
“With the Greens proposing a council tax increase of 5.9 per cent and the Labour group 2 per cent, it is only the Conservatives whose council tax proposal is below the current rate of inflation of 0.3 per cent.”
Councillor Geoffrey Theobald, leader of the opposition Conservative group, said: “I believe our proposals offer the best balance between affordability for residents and preserving, and indeed improving, some of the frontline services they rely upon.
“We would like to see the council doing much more to engage with the city’s excellent not-for profit sector to deliver more effective youth services, children’s centre services and learning disability services to name just a few.
“This failure to modernise some of the council’s key services, as the vast majority of other councils have done, has cost this city dear and our proposals seek to show residents that there is another way.”
Councillor Ann Norman, the Conservative group finance spokesman, said: “With other household bills such as gas, electricity, petrol and food all coming down in recent months, Labour and the Greens really cannot justify asking residents to put their hands in their pockets for council tax rises and parking charge hikes way in excess of the rate of inflation.
“And this at the same time as cutting vital services for residents and visitors such as public toilets.
“Our proposals show that we are the only party that can be trusted to run the council effectively and efficiently.”
Councillor Theobald can be seen discussing the budget with the Labour group leader, Councillor Warren Morgan, on The Vote on Latest TV at 8pm tomorrow (Wednesday 25 February).