“B&NES’ Missing Millions” – Shock figures show Government’s underfunding of local area

New figures have revealed that each resident in Bath and North East Somerset receives only a fraction of what the Government spends on residents of other local authorities.

Each resident in B&NES receives just £230 per person per year from the Government’s ‘Formula Grant’, which is the general grant the Council receives from Government. While B&NES residents get only £230 per year, Brighton & Hove for example gets £429 – significantly more than their needs assessed grant level states the amount should be.

In contrast, the money B&NES receives is actually significantly below the amount Government itself says the grant should be when taking into account relative needs and deprivation.

The shortfall of grant to B&NES has added up to £12.7 million lost to the local area over the past five years and has been labelled a “shocking indictment” of the Labour Government’s lack of support for the local area. The statistics have been revealed as Councils throughout the country are drawing up their annual budgets, with the budget in B&NES to be set at a Council Meeting on February the 16th.

Local Conservatives in Bath and North East Somerset have been campaigning for several years against the Government’s underfunding of the local area, and have joined with local residents to get back ‘B&NES missing millions’.

Conservative Councillor Malcolm Hanney, who is also the Cabinet Member in charge of Council finances, said:

“These figures reveal the level of continuing under-funding of our area by the Government. The Government believes residents in B&NES deserve less than a third to a half the money other areas receive. However, what is really shocking is that they are giving us £2.5 million per annum less than their own calculations of our needs assessment while still giving other Councils millions more than they calculate they need or deserve.

“It is time our area’s MPs stood up for the local area and supported our calls to get back B&NES’ missing millions. As public spending faces tough times in the coming years, residents here deserve their fair share of Government funding.”