Conservative-run Medway Council has halved its funding for trade unions savings £46,000. The money saved will be used to but extra library books.
The decision has won the approval of the Communities Secretary Eric Pickles as the following exchange from Hansard makes clear:
Tracey Crouch (Chatham and Aylesford) (Con): Will the Secretary of State join me in congratulating councils that have protected front-line services through creative and innovative thinking about their budgets, such as Medway council, which has halved its funding to trade unions and given that money to fund library books instead?
Mr Pickles: I do indeed congratulate them. My hon. Friend points out to those on the Opposition Benches a way in which money can be directed towards the front line. I hope that the right hon. Member for Don Valley (Caroline Flint) will send out requests that Labour councils similarly to look towards trade unions and reducing their costs.