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Trafford's Conservative and Labour groups clash over budget
12:17pm Friday 22nd February 2013 in News
TRAFFORD'S Tory and Labour groups have squared up over the budget.
The borough's ruling Conservative group has agreed a council budget that will see 171 jobs axed. Council tax has been freezed.
The borough needs to save £34m over two years.
But Labour group leader, Cllr David Acton, said residents who could least afford it would be hit.
He claimed: "The 'council tax freeze' is not actually a freeze for many working people who will be paying more thanks to the benefit changes the Conservatives are introducing here in Trafford.
"Individuals and families in low paid jobs and those on benefits who currently pay little or no council tax will be hit with increased bills.
"This is wrong and will create great hardship and could cost those that can least afford it up to an extra £600 a year."
But Cllr Sean Anstee, executive member for finance, hit back: "Unlike Labour council's across Greater Manchester who are hiking charges by at least 3.5 per cent, Conservatives are freezing the portion of the council tax bill used for Trafford services in 2013-14 for the third year running - every household will benefit from this move and means Trafford continues to have the lowest Council Tax in the North West."
He added: "The changes to council tax support scheme agreed earlier this year are such that 73 per cent of existing working age claimants and all pensioners will see no change to the support they presently receive - a fact Cllr Acton continues to ignore."