Earlier this week, I set out five key things we were looking to hear from the Chancellor in his budget the other day.
There was no mention of the crisis in funding social care, or about how we protect services like children’s centres. No more detail about the ‘Northern Powerhouse’. Nothing on HS2. And no prospect of a fairer funding deal for Liverpool.
In fact, there was no mention of local government at all. Zero out of five for addressing Liverpool’s needs.
The Chancellor used his speech to conveniently gloss over the fact he inherited a growing economy from Labour before plunging it in the deep freeze with his rash budget cuts in 2010. George Osborne’s record is clear: lower growth, stagnant wages and falling living standards. Nothing in his speech changes that dismal record.
As for his boast that every part of the country is feeling the effects of economic recovery, he should take a closer look at his own unemployment figures. They show 10,000 people across Liverpool are still unemployed – nearly twice the national average.
As an example of his short-sighted and blinkered approach, he has cut 1p from Beer Tax but nothing to help with the £228m cost of dealing with problems of alcohol in the Liverpool City Region – only more cuts.
There are precious few votes for this Tory-led government in Liverpool so, once again, they are making us pay for their mistakes.
Mayor of Liverpool