Council set for budget wars

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Budget war was set to erupt this week as councillors attempt to plan their annual spending.

The Conservative-set budget, which proposes a zero increase in council tax, claims to preserve front-line services such as community transport and bin collections.

But opposition Labour and Lib Dem councillors are slamming the recommended £200,000 reduction in transport spending, which comes on top of last year’s cuts of bus service’s.

Labour want more cash spent of repairing older city estate roads and pavements and more money spent on regeneration schemes.

Labour leader Peter Marland said his group would not support the proposed budget as it stands but was prepared to “be responsible” and talk to the administration.

“We want to avoid silly political games, do what is best for the people of MK and move forward in really difficult times,” he said.

Conservative leader Andrew Geary insists no council services will be affected by the budget and says many will be improved by re-tendering.

A ‘reduction in back office function’ will also lead to a leaner, more efficient council, say the Tories.