Sadiq Khan didn't have to make struggling Londoners pay more

Mayor Sadiq Khan opens City Hall to EU Londoners. Pictures: Mike Brooke (inset) and Tom Simpson

Mayor Sadiq Khan has increased council tax in this year's budget - Credit: MIke Brooke (inset) and Tom Simpson (GLA)

Sadiq Khan's final budget as mayor shows he has the wrong priorities for London. Instead of making savings, Khan chose to increase his share of council tax by 9.5 per cent and protect his wasteful spending. 

Worse still, the mayor's refusing to take responsibility for his decision by claiming he had "no choice" but to make Londoners pay more. This simply isn't true - the mayor did have a choice and the Conservative Group at City Hall presented it to him.

London Assembly member Keith Prince.

Keith Prince and colleagues unveiled a fully-costed amendment to the mayor's budget which would have frozen council tax - Credit: City Hall

My colleagues and I unveiled a fully-costed amendment to the mayor's budget which would have frozen council tax. Our plan would protect concessionary travel, including free travel for under-18s, invest £45million in policing and create a £50m recovery fund without adding a penny to Londoners' council tax bill. 

Instead of increasing council tax, we identified how the mayor could make nearly £100million in savings by cutting waste at City Hall and reforming Transport for London. By modernising TfL's outdated and extortionate bonuses, perks and gold-plated pensions, Khan could save nearly £90m. A further £7m could have been saved by scrapping the mayor's controversial statue-toppling commission and cutting his PR budgets.

Sadiq Khan didn't have to make struggling Londoners pay more - he could have backed our plan to freeze council tax. Sadly, the mayor refused to cut his waste and reform TfL and chose to slap struggling Londoners with a bigger tax bill. In good times, it's terrible judgement. In the midst of a pandemic, it's disgraceful.


You may also want to watch:


Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter
Comments powered by Disqus