Lincolnshire fairer deal fight goes to House of Commons
Lincolnshire political leaders have taken their fight for a fair funding deal to the House of Commons.
Coun Martin Hill, leader of Lincolnshire County Council, was joined by South Holland and the Deepings MP John Hayes for talks the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Sajid Javid MP, on Wednesday.
With increasing costs and demand for services, we were clear during our meeting with Ministers that something has to change
It was the latest chance for political leaders from the county to argue that Lincolnshire could be losing out on as much as £116 million a year due to a formula used by the Government to allocate money to councils in England.
Speaking after the meeting, Coun Hill said: “I am pleased to report that the meeting was positive and Sajid Javid was complimentary about how well the council is running services in Lincolnshire, especially considering our low funding rates. “Mr Javid does however accept that the formula is unfair to rural areas and he is personally committed to reforming this.
“Our funding rates are set for the next two years and I am comfortable that we can find the savings we need to during this time to meet our budget shortfall.
“However, with increasing costs and demand for services, we were clear during our meeting with Ministers that something has to change and we are expecting further Government announcements about this before the end of the year, following the Chancellor’s budget.
“If councils here received the average funding for council areas in England, the region would benefit from £116million of extra funding for services, every year.
“This is a huge amount and would make an enormous difference to Lincolnshire residents and the services they value.”
Support for the fairer funding campaign has come from all 10 borough, district, county and unitary councils in Greater Lincolnshire, including South Holland District Council.
Its leader, Coun Gary Porter, said: “It can’t be right that services in this part of the country are being delivered with a lot less money than other parts of the country so that we’re having to cut services that other parts of the country can provide.
“This is part of making sure that the Government listens to us.”