Magazine article Public Finance

Local Election Battle Starts

Magazine article Public Finance

Local Election Battle Starts

Article excerpt

Labour and the Liberal Democrats this week set out their stalls for the local elections on May 4 and immediately attacked one another's record in local government.

Prime Minister Tony Blair lined up with Chancellor Gordon Brown and other Cabinet members to launch his party's manifesto on April 5, and pledged to campaign on three issues.

'The first is that the average council tax in the country is lower under Labour than under the Liberal Democrat or Conservative authorities. We have got to keep it that way and we will,' Blair said.

'Second, we are the champions of the campaign against antisocial behaviour. Third, we are the party that believes in education for all, not simply a privileged few.'

Labour faces a tough fight in the local elections, especially in the key battleground of London, where it is unlikely to keep control of all 15 of its authorities. …

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