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A Drop in the Ocean Budget for Stockton

November 22, 2017 8:39 PM

Stockton Liberal Democrats have described today's budget as a drop in the ocean of what's needed for our area.

While welcoming all extra funds for the former SSI site in Redcar Drew Durning, Stockton South Parliamentary Spokesperson, said "Many people in this area lost good jobs when SSI closed. The money allocated by the Chancellor is simply not enough. Of the £123m that Philip Hammond has announced only £5m is directly for the South Tees Development Corporation with the rest being for keep safe operations and remediation work. What the SSI site needs is to be transformed into a genuine enterprise zone with tens of millions of pounds of incentives to attract businesses with real skilled jobs onto the site. We don't need more zero hours contracts and low paid part time jobs which do nothing to lift families out of poverty. Liberal Democrats across the Tees Valley will be monitoring this regeneration project very carefully."

Stockton North campaigner, David Minchella, reacted to the NHS funding announcement with dismay. "NHS Chief Executive, Simon Stevens, said that £4bn was needed to stave off the crisis developing in our health service. The Chancellor has fallen far short of that need. Nothing was said about the crisis in social care, and no hope was given to the people on waiting lists for mental health support. A service on which the vast majority of people in the country depend for their health and well being is being starved to death. This government should be ashamed of itself."

Liberal Democrats will continue to campaign for a penny in the pound on income tax to raise an extra £6bn a year for health and social care.