A General Election candidate for Lichfield and Burntwood says the next government must fund local authorities properly.
Paul Ray will stand for the Liberal Democrat at the vote on 12th December.
The local councillor said he had seen first hand the impact of cuts imposed by the Conservatives:
“Schools, the NHS, transport and housing are all in such an awful state – now we do not even have a police help desk, let alone a police station, in Lichfield.
“In my role as a local councillor I see the results of the severe underfunding by the Conservatives of our local services on a day to day basis.
“A two week wait to see a GP, 1,200 people locally on the housing waiting list and the dreadful state of our roads.
“But potholes are just one example of the dreadful state of our public services
“Due to the savage lack of funding of local government by the Conservatives our local council made a decision to close of the Friary Grange Leisure Centre.
“But thanks to the spirit of our local community that decision was reversed and I was delighted that my active role in that campaign was able to contribute to its success.
“The answer is not to put up council tax but to make central government fund local authorities properly.”
“We need a fairer tax system”
The Lib Dem hopeful says reforms are needed to the way services are funded.
“We need a fairer tax system. Higher earners should pay some more tax and we will raise corporation tax to 20%.
“We are also honest about our spending plans. No-one want to pay more tax but we will put a 1p on income tax that we all pay and that will be ring-fenced for social care and NHS spending.
“Michael Fabricant and the Conservative government, in contrast, have totally underfunded our public services and you just can’t trust the spending plans in their manifesto. They are chicken-feed. Our public services will go backwards under the Conservatives .
“And Labour are offering you the earth – but you just can’t believe Labour’s spending plans. They are just not realistic and responsible.
“The Liberal Democrats have both sensible solutions and realistic ways of achieving results. The independent Institute of Fiscal Studies has said that only the Lib Dem spending plans stack up.
“The Liberal Democrats are the strongest party of Remain and we believe that our future is best within the EU.
” And if we Stop Brexit there will be a £50billion bonus to the economy which we can invest in our public services – and again that figure has been independently approved by the Institute of Fiscal Studies.”
Candidates confirmed for the Lichfield seat at the General Election are:
- Michael Fabricant (Conservatives)
- John Madden (Independent)
- Andrea Muckley (Green Party)
- Paul Ray (Lib Dems)
- Dave Robertson (Labour)