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Mayor Dave: Northants Strife Demonstrates Importance of Our Fight to Save Services in Bedford Borough

August 30, 2018 6:13 PM

Mayor Dave Hodgson with Bedford Borough MapMayor Dave Hodgson has reassured residents that the financial rigour and commitment to services of Bedford Borough Council means it is in a markedly different situation from Northamptonshire County Council and the Conservatives' 'massive, emergency cuts programme' there.

However, he has warned that Bedford Borough is subject to the same brutal and unprecedented ongoing Government cuts as authorities elsewhere, and called for them to be halted.

In a recent post on his Facebook page, Mayor Dave shared a link to the BBC News story about Conservative-led East Sussex County Council joining Northants in declaring a financial emergency, and added:

"As this BBC report states, a second Conservative-run Council has cut its services to the legal minimum, with East Sussex joining our neighbours Northants in immediate financial crisis.

We have firmly established rigorous financial management on Bedford Borough Council, and I want to reassure residents that, while we are also bearing the brunt of the Government's unprecedented and brutal cuts in funding for local services, our situation is markedly different from the one across our border where another massive, emergency cuts programme was agreed last week.

We have of course fought successfully to save many services that have been slashed nearby and right across the country, and continue to fight week in, week out to do so. However, as the National Audit Office, charities and many others have warned, the brutal and unprecedented cuts in funding for local services by this government are not sustainable if we want local councils and the services they provide to continue in anything like their current form.

I see that even the Conservative MP for Northampton South recognises that the financial disaster and massive service cuts across our Border with Northants is the fault not only of the Conservative County Council but also of the Government's underfunding of local services.

I look forward to the day that Bedford Borough Conservatives put party politics aside like that and actually stand up for Bedford Borough, not just on cuts to council funding but also other issues such as the failing rail service and cuts to health services."