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Statement re Surrey County Council council tax proposals

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Cllr Warren Morgan, Leader of Brighton and Hove City Council, said:

"There seems to be evidence that some kind of arrangement has been made between Surrey County Council and the Government to help them meet their social care costs.

All top-tier councils like Surrey and Brighton and Hove face huge pressures in meeting the funding challenges; with our social care bill now some £25m more than the entire amount we bring in through council tax.

Surrey were threatening a 15% council tax increase, but yesterday at the last minute chose to reduce it to 5%, the same as BHCC and our neighbours in East Sussex. 

We have worked very hard to minimise cuts to jobs and services whilst facing huge cuts and rapidly escalating social care costs.

There must be an investigation into whether Surrey have won a preferential funding deal by threatening a steep rise, and if so then the Government have to make that same deal available to other councils who have played by the rules.

We cannot continue to have the Government pass the costs of services on to the local taxpayer and there is agreement cross-party that they have to find an urgent solution to the social care funding crisis.”

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