There are local government elections across England and Wales this May and research by the Liberal Democrats has identified many examples of the way in which Labour councils in particular waste and misuse taxpayers' heard-earned money.
Speaking in Tyburn Ward recently, Liberal Democrat campaigner Ann Holtom spelled out some of the worst excesses of Labour local government spending.
- Derby Labour used residents' money to fund emotive street posters to pass the blame for cuts decisions onto the government while refusing government funding to freeze council tax.
- Salford Council has appointed a spin doctor on £66,000 a year.
- Sheffield spend half a million pounds a year on trade union officials while planning to cut half of the city's libraries
- Cardiff is recruiting a PR guru for the leader on £80,000 while making cuts of £22m.
- Islington Labour has spent £4.5m on redundancy payments to lay-off nearly 400 staff while spending £8m on agency workers
- In nearby Warwickshire Labour backed Tory plans to build a refuse incinerator which would have cost the Council over £250 million in excess costs over 25 years if it had gone ahead. Fortunately the Lib Dems opposed it.
Ann said that the upcoming elections are about who has the right priorities in tough times and Liberal Democrat councillors have records to be proud of, standing up for local people. No library will be closed in any Lib Dem-run or Lib Dem-led authorities this year. Liberal Democrats are helping businesses and customers to get their economies moving with investment in roads and public transport. Lib Dem councils are boosting public services - with schemes that generate income or savings for residents, focusing on jobs and investing in homes. Unfortunately, there are no local elections in Birmingham until next year, so we don't get the chance to punish Labour for their abject record of waste and inefficiency here.