A headshot of the Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham
The Mayor Economy

Statement from The Mayor on today's Spring Budget

The Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham, has responded to the Spring Budget delivered by the Chancellor today (Wednesday 6 March):

"The Chancellor deserves some credit for extending the Household Support Fund in today’s Budget. As Metro Mayors we joined more than 170 councils in calling for an extension to the Fund, which has been a lifeline for thousands of people in Greater Manchester during the cost-of-living crisis.

"There were also further positive announcements on devolution, with a trailblazer deal for the North East and steps towards devolution in regions in the South.

"But this Budget failed to acknowledge or address the national emergency in the state of local government finances. Instead, the Chancellor chose tax cuts that will ultimately be paid for by further drastic cuts to public services. The consequences are severe – for communities both in Greater Manchester and across the UK – and our most vulnerable residents will be hardest hit.

"It is unacceptable for local government to be treated this way. Councils have a statutory duty to provide certain services, but in many areas the funding they receive is below the level they need to deliver those essential services.

"Earlier this week the Chancellor criticised councils for spending too much on consultants, but today’s Budget offered more of the same begging-bowl culture that forces councils to bid for small pots of funding. Facilities people use every day are crumbling and councils are being forced to sell off assets, but the best the government can offer is a £5m pot, controlled by Whitehall, for renovating village halls.

"This government has made progress on English devolution but it cannot ignore the chronic underfunding of local authorities in our regions. Devolution needs to be built on solid foundations – not undermined by inadequate funding of local government."

Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham

Article Published: 06/03/2024 18:38 PM