South Tyneside residents attack social care funding plan

South Shields Town Hall
South Shields Town Hall

Council bosses in South Tyneside who have accused the Government of dumping the spiralling cost of social care on council tax payers have some battle to win at home.

The Government are allowing councils to bring forward council tax increases over the next two years to pay for social care, a move which will add a total of more than £90 to the average bill for a Band D property.

Coun Tracey Dixon, South Tyneside’s lead member for independence and wellbeing, attacked the decision as an “extremely unfair” way to pay for a funding gap that has been created by Government’s own policies and pushing the burden directly onto local council taxpayers.

She added: “It is particularly unfair because areas with the lowest council tax base have the highest demand for services this policy widens the inequality gap across the country, disproportionately affecting councils such as South Tyneside.

“We are likely to have no option but to take the unwelcome step of having to raise Council Tax still further as the government pushes the burden of the crisis created by its policies on to local taxpayers.”

That last comment has npot gone down well with Gazette readers who topok to our Facebook page to make their feelings clear.

Megan Scott wrote: “Maybe the councillors should take back the pay rise and use that to fund social care instead.”

Jayne Wilkinson added: “The council doesn’t have to raise Council Tax but they will.”

Steven Slack wrote: “Maybe they should give their pay rise back.”

Dawn Pullen added: “Funny that they all got a rise.”

Matthew Hunt wrote: “Just make sure it actually gets spent on social care this time, not a pay rise for councillors.”

Phillip Bewick added: “If they didnt employ so many pen pushers they wouldnt need to continually cut front line services and increase taxes.”

Mick Hudson wrote: “It is the Conservative’s that are doing this to all the councils. The Governemt want to shift the blame to them.”