Letters: David Holland, February 19, 2016

Chancellor George Osborne addresses the Conservative Party conference in Manchester. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Monday October 5, 2015. See PA story TORY Main. Photo credit should read: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire PPP-151014-115727001

Chancellor George Osborne addresses the Conservative Party conference in Manchester. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Monday October 5, 2015. See PA story TORY Main. Photo credit should read: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire PPP-151014-115727001

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Between 1997 and 2016, pensioners have got by on a state pension that has increased by only 92 per cent, while over the same period Norfolk council tax has gone up 155 per cent.

The increase to the council tax that pays for policing has increased even more, by 355per cent. At the same time that the state pension has slipped behind the cost of living, outstripped by the cost of paying for the council tax, the national Government has made cuts of some 25 per cent to Norfolk’s council services due to the ‘austerity’ imposed after 2010. Many of these cuts directly affect services to the elderly.

Next year, the council tax precept on a band D house is expected to be £1,190. Cuts to total spending since 2010 are worth another £1,050 per household. The effect of cuts and council tax increases are about double the raise to the state pension, in other words they are costing pensioners twice as much.

I recently heard the two leaders talking on Radio Norfolk, one following whatever George Osborne had decreed, the other saying he is a good old Norfolk boy, but conveniently forgetting his party put up the council tax in the first years that they last controlled the council by over 30 per cent. A £100 million burden that has been borne by council tax payers every year since.

David Holland

Oaklands Farm, Litcham