Labour Councillors Branded 'Frauds' by SNP in Falkirk
08 October 2010
Labour members intending to attend a STUC march against Westminster Tory cuts to be held in Glasgow on 23 October were described as “frauds” by the SNP members of the council.
The Nationalists had sought to commit the council to supporting the TUC’s alternative strategy outlined at the recent TUC conference but were against when Labour and Tory members combined to defeat the SNP motion and distance the council Administration from the Trade Union Movement.
During the debate SNP leader, David Alexander said,
“The current financial crisis is not being caused by an explosion of public spending but by a drastic drop in central government income.
The way to rectify this is not to cut but to invest in the economy and to bring forward a fair taxation system
For example, it is estimated that the UK Treasury are losing out to the tune of £25billion pounds per year through legal loopholes left deliberately to help the rich get richer.
It is estimated that around £70billion is lost in illegal tax avoidance and yet New Labour cut more than 25,000 Revenue and Customs jobs, including many here in Falkirk now the Tories are going down the same route as New Labour.
What we are seeing from both the Tory / Liberal Administration in London and the New Labour / Tory Administration in Falkirk Council are cuts that hit the poorest hardest.
While the three main London parties fall over themselves to cut back on public services the TUC campaign to protect jobs and services has shone like a beacon in the darkness.
However, Falkirk Council’s Labour Group’s unanimous decision not to support the TUC’s campaign was an act of betrayal of not only Falkirk Council staff but the communities being decimated by the cuts.
Some Labour members (Craig R Martin) urged members to attend the STUC rally against the cuts before voting against the STUC campaign. Such double standards demonstrate how fraudulent New Labour’s position is in terms of not only their support of Tory cuts but their formal alliance with David Cameron’s Tory Party within Falkirk Council.”
Members are invited to note the current spending in this financial year.
Members also agree that the cuts proposed by the current Conservative / Liberal Government will have a detrimental effect on not only the provision of essential services to the
most vulnerable within our community but also the wider local economy.
Members therefore agree to support the TUC’s “Alternative Strategy” and calls on local MSP’s and MP’s to join the campaign against the cuts.
Council also agrees to have regular reports on the progress of the campaign against the Conservative led cuts.
SNP Councillors were buoyed by the news that the devolved Administrations of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland had signed a joint declaration pledging to fight the cuts.
Said Cllr Alexander,
“It appears that the only opposition to the current Tory / Liberal governments cuts are coming from the Celtic nations rather than the Labour Party, the official opposition in name only.”
Angus MacDonald Calls for Fair Play on CAB Funding
07 October 2010
Grangemouth Councillor Angus MacDonald, who is also standing at the SNP’s candidate at the forthcoming Scottish Parliament elections, yesterday (Wednesday) called on the ruling Tory/Labour/Independent administration on Falkirk Council not to cut any further the money provided to the three Citizen’s Advice Bureaux operating in Falkirk district.
Speaking at the Full Council meeting during a debate on the Single Outcome Agreement 2009/11, Councillor MacDonald made a specific plea that the ruling Administration and the Corporate Management Team, made up of all the Council’s Directors, should not reduce any further the amount of funding given to the CAB.
Councillor MacDonald said:
“I call on the ruling administration and the Corporate Management Team to ensure there is no further reduction in funds paid to the CAB. Some local elected Members, including yourself Provost, recently attended the AGM of the Citizen’s Advice Bureau (Grangemouth & Bo’ness) and saw the good work going on there. We also see that during 2009/10 £49 million of debt has been renegotiated, with over 330 benefit checks completed and over 135 debt cases supported in Falkirk district. Clients have also accessed £740,000 in benefit claims.
“Given that the current economic crisis will without doubt impact on demand for the services of the CAB, we must ensure that there is no further erosion of funding for this service. I make no apology for cherry-picking as this service is worth every penny of support, and urge the ruling administration to look favourably on this service when deciding the final budget allocations later in the year.”