VOICE OF SCOTLAND; Councils' Budgets Just Don't Add Up

Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland), March 17, 2000 | Go to article overview

VOICE OF SCOTLAND; Councils' Budgets Just Don't Add Up


EACH year, local councils put up community taxes and each year, they slash jobs and public services to pay for it.

At this rate, we'll end up paying for no public services and local authorities will be staffed by robots. Why can't local government balance its books? - Keith Maguire, Glasgow.

LOCAL councils are making the public poorer every year with inflation-busting rises in rent and council tax.

While millions are pouring into council coffers, only a trickle is going on services. Where does the money disappear to? - J. Greene, Glasgow.

IT is time for a review of the way local government is funded.The council tax bands are too broad to reflect a fair distribution of wealth, especially Bands F and G.

Homeowners in Band G, whose homes may be valued at pounds 106,000 pay the same as someone whose home is worth double that. The Government must acknowledge that this is unfair and spread payments on a more equal basis of wealth. - Linda Armstrong, Penicuik.

Taxing times I HAD to laugh at William Hague's assertion that lower taxes would mean people giving more to charity.

Fair enough. But lower taxes mean more money in the pockets of ordinary men and women. I hardly think charities would be the main beneficiaries. - Jim Osgood, Perth.

Off tune I WAS amazed to read about the claim by former Liverpool club owner Sam Leach that he was responsible for nurturing The Beatles' talent. Why, then, has no self-respecting fan ever heard of him?

The Beatles all acknowledged that Brian Epstein's theatrical flair turned the Fabs from raw youngsters into a pop legend. It is doubtful whether they would have made it without him. - Kenneth Fraser, Glasgow.

Black marks THE publication of a black Who's Who surely demonstrates the kind of racism that we all wish to see wiped out. Why did someone feel the need to do this? All this does is pour fuel on already-troubled flames.

If there had been a whites-only Who's Who, there would rightly have been a public outcry. - Jim Gray, Hamilton.

Fran's right TRAVIS singer Fran Healy's claim that tobacco is more harmful than cannabis shows great common sense.

I think cannabis should be legalised, provided it is taken in the privacy of your own home. Smoking is a much deadlier and filthier habit. - Alison McDonald, Airdrie.

UK loses out THE threat to the Rover car factory at Longbridge comes as no surprise. Whenever control of a British company goes outwith this country, it is our workers who end up suffering.

The Government should demand that BMW hands back any grants they were given to keep the Longbridge plant open. It's high time we stopped this foreign pillage of what little industry we have left. - K. Raymond, London.

Deadly drugs TONY BLAIR is waging a "Euro War" on what he calls "Britain's Drug Menace". Presumably he is talking about illegal, non-taxable drugs and not painkillers which, according to a recent medical report, are responsible for the deaths of 2000 people in the UK every year - and are available over the counter WITHOUT prescription.

This frightening total far exceeds all fatalities caused annually by all illegal drugs put together. - Allan Reid, Anniesland, Glasgow.

Beg to differ I HOPE reader Christine Parker saw the Record headlines about the begging antics of Romanian refugees.

It's high time "softies" like her woke up to the fact these people are sponging off the hard-working British taxpayer and all the money given to them should be going to our own poor - the homeless, pensioners and the disabled. Once we've eradicated poverty in the UK, then and only then should we help others. - Angela Hislop, via e-mail.

Wearing thin VANESSA FELTZ blasted her husband this week for turning up at a celebrity bash, saying he always claimed when they were married that he didn't like the limelight.

She may have lost a lot of weight recently, but it seems we're seeing even more of this loud-mouthed presenter than before. …

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