Bedford Borough Conservative Group Issues Budget Warning

The Bedford Borough Conservative Group has backed the Council’s budget for 2013/14, but has slammed the Liberal Democrat and Labour administration for wasting tax payers’ money and for failing to prepare Bedofrd Borough Council for significant financial challenges in the years to come.

Cllr Stephen Moon, the Leader of the Conservative Group said;

‘We are pleased to see that unnecessary spending is being trimmed due to the hard work of officers.  However, while we support this budget we feel the Mayor has shown poor financial management which has cost tax payers dearly.  For instance, the year’s delay on the decision to seek private management for the Council’s leisure services has wasted £320k.

‘The Mayor has also failed to take tough decisions about the future of some of the Council’s discretionary services.  The Council must do all it can to protect the most vulnerable people in the Borough, including increasing numbers of elderly residents. This requires services to be prioritised yet there is no evidence of this happening.

‘The Conservative Group would like to see more savings by sharing procurement and back office functions with other councils.  There is no coherent strategy to support the town centre, so services such as car parking charges and public conveniences are just used as an opportunity to make and save money.  This Liberal Democrat and Labour administration must do much better for the people of Bedford Borough.’