I was surprised to see such a vociferous response from a Labour election candidate to a Conservative Party election leaflet in last week’s Herald.
Our leaflets contain many positive aims and achievements for Worthing. The ‘offending’ paragraph merely stated that we believe, with good reason, that Conservative councillors are the best choice of steward for taxpayers’ money.
The evidence to support this is overwhelming.
Over the past seven years Conservative-led Worthing Borough Council’s average council tax increases have been under 0.9 per cent, well below the rate of inflation. Labour’s record is completely different. Between 1997 and 2010, council tax in England more than doubled. A key Jeremy Corbyn ally recently proposed huge hikes for many council tax bands which would include doubling some bills. Last year, the Labour Party proposed a controversial land value tax.
The Conservative Party’s current ‘referendum lock’ prevents borough councils like Worthing from raising council tax by more than three per cent without holding a local referendum.
Labour councillors have been calling for this requirement to be abolished. Why would they do that if they weren’t planning above inflation council tax rises?
As the council’s cabinet member for finance I am proud of the Conservative Party’s record on council tax in Worthing and the fact that we have achieved it while reducing our dependence on government grant funding by over £4million a year.
Only a Conservative-led council can be trusted to keep a tight rein on council tax increases in the future.
Cllr Edward Crouch
Conservative Candidate for Marine Ward,
St Valerie Road, Worthing
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