Thursday, 14 February 2013

Cornwall's top Tories seek Liberal Democrat leadership

At yesterday's cabinet meeting, Conservative cabinet members were queuing up to ask for Liberal Democrat leadership on council tax and the budget.

Apparently, it is all because I was quoted on Radio Cornwall yesterday morning setting out the Liberal Democrat position:
"We want to see the lowest possible level of council tax whilst protecting services. If we can find a way of freezing council tax for a third straight year whilst protecting the services that people value, then we will do so. If we can't freeze council tax then we will seek the minimum increase necessary."
The Conservative Leadership's budget is asking for a 1.97% rise in council tax - described as 'referendum dodging' by one of the own local government ministers in London. All four Independent councillors on the cabinet spoke in support of that rise yesterday, as did all but one of the Conservative Cabinet members.

The narrative from Conservative councillors Armand Toms, Carolyn Rule and Lance Kennedy was that they were happy to back a 1.97% rise, but would look to see if the Liberal Democrats could come up with an alternative budget proposal that would allow for a freeze. They are also hoping that their fellow Conservative Fiona Ferguson might be able to provide a freeze option.

It seems that even the Conservatives are looking for Lib Dem leadership in Cornwall.

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