On Tuesday night Liberal Democrat controlled Woodley Town Council set an increase in the precept of 3.5% for a band D council tax payer. The increase amounts to 7 pence a week for a band D household.
Following the meeting Beth Rowland, Lib Dem Leader of the council said “I am very pleased that we have managed to keep the increase to inflation only and that we can continue to provide the full range of important facilities and services in Woodley. Last year was very difficult for everyone with the massive increases in energy costs; the council was hit particularly hard by this. The 2009/10 precept, at a 3.5% increase, reflects the careful financial management by the lib Dem administration of the Town Council. Woodley Town Council provides far more for its residents than any other town or parish council in the borough.”
Coling Lawley Deputy leader said “We are committed to providing the services for Woodley that Tory controlled Wokingham Borough will not” he went on to explain “It is quite clear that the Tories do not provide a fair share of borough funded leisure services in Woodley. Without the town council stepping in there would be no leisure services in Woodley.”
Phil Challis Lib Dem town councilor said “I am proud to be part of a Lib Dem administration which believes in providing leisure facilities for residents of all ages. We provide an amazing range of facilities for around £2 per week per household (Band D). At last night’s meeting the Tory group said that all operations should break even, but refused to say how they would achieve this. However the Tory record at Wokingham Borough is one of cutting services, making people redundant and rising charges.”
Beth Rowland said “As well as providing leisure facilities and community halls, Woodley Town Council provides funding for important services such as Readibus, Citizen’s Advice Bureau, Youth outreach services through Just Around the Corner (JAC) as well as a police office and job support centre. I want the Tories to come clean and tell the residents of Woodley just which staff and services they would cut”.
Ray Duncan, Liberal Democrat Town Councilor said “Woodley has a great sense of community and I think this is related to the commitment the Lib Dems have made to providing leisure facilities in Woodley. I dread to think what would happen to our community if the Tories ever gained control of the council and cut services in the same way that they continue to do in Wokingham Borough”.