Two more Conservative-run councils are contemplating Council Tax rises, snubbing the offer of funding for a freeze. It should be stressed that such rises would need to be voted through by all councillors at a full council meeting.
Cambridgeshire plans a 2.95% rise. Their Council leader Cllr Nick Clarke says:
"I need to look people in the eye and say when their elderly folk need support, it will be there for them."
But for the coming financial year of 2012/13 his decision means the "elderly folk" will face higher Council Tax without the Council having higher revenue than it would have had with a Council Tax freeze. The ruse is to put the Council Tax up in the coming year, staggering the increase, to avoid a referendum for a sharp in 2013.
Cllr Clarke seems to believe that spending more money is the way to achieve a good service in adult social care. He might be interested to learn about our Quality Assurance arrangements at Hammersmith and Fulham. This performance management makes sure that our social workers are up to the job. That the process is effective. Introducing it has saved £1 million and improved the service to vulnerable.
Tunbridge Wells Borough Council, also Conservative, is proposing a 3.3% Council Tax rise – or "adjustment" as the Council leader Cllr Robert Atwood calls it. He implies that residents would back this rise as "they are pleased with the services we provide and would be reluctant to see us discontinue any of them." Thus he pumps out the discredited Socialist message that higher spending equates to better service. If he really thinks the residents agree why not make it a 3.51% rise and give them a referendum?