Reading Conservatives today condemned Labour’s use of Council Tax payers’ money to fund Trade Union officials at Reading Borough Council.
This follows the news that during the previous Labour administration of Reading at least £1,400,000 of Council Tax receipts was used to fund Trade Union posts within the Council. This arrangement is known to have been in place at least since Reading became a Unitary Authority in 1998 and possibly much longer. The £1.4m relates to the last 12 years only.
Councillor Andrew Cumpsty, Leader of the Conservative Group, said “Local people I have spoken to have been shocked to discover that the previous Labour administration was using Council Tax to fund their Trade Union colleagues. Along with freezing Council Tax, our Conservative/Lib Dem Coalition Council has stopped this money, since in our view Council Tax payers’ money should be spent on things like schools, better transport, caring for the elderly, the vulnerable and children.
This giving of tax-payers’ money by Labour has been going on for at least 12 years and it could be longer. We know for definite they have given £1.4million of Council Tax Payers money. Local people are finding things tough just now and I am sure they would be horrified to hear that the former Labour Council were spending their money in this way. Some residents are now asking that in these difficult times the Labour Party or Unions pay the money back.”
On Wednesday the news was also condemned by the Prime Minister when Reading West MP Alok Sharma raised the matter at Prime Minister’s Questions in the House of Commons.