Liberal Democrat candidate, Ann Holtom, has reacted angrily to the news that Birmingham's Labour Council has failed to spend nearly £3 million, given to it by the Coalition government, to help provide crisis payments to some of the city's poorest families.
Mrs Holtom, who is trying to win back her seat in Tyburn Ward, said: "This means that Labour has only managed to spend half the Local Welfare Fund money allocated to it by the Coalition. And in the last six months it has only managed to hand out about £400,000. Yet Labour is constantly bleating that it is the government which is to blame for cuts in Council spending. Nearly £3 million pounds of this money which could be going to help poor families to spend on food, clothing and other essentials is sitting in a council bank account. This is an outrageous failure on Labour's part towards the poorest people in our community and I urge residents to remember this when they go and vote on 22 May. "