Scarborough council leader says he looks forward to working with local MPs to end North-South divide

The Labour leader of Scarborough council has congratulated local MPs on their reelection but highlighted Scarborough's position as the biggest fund loser in the region.

Friday, 13th December 2019, 4:46 pm
Updated Friday, 13th December 2019, 4:47 pm

Cllr Steve Siddons said he looked forward to working with them to end the North-South divide and Scarborough’s position as the biggest fund loser in Yorkshire.

He said: “I congratulate Robert Goodwill and Kevin Hollinrake on their reelection and look forward to an early meeting with them so we can work together to achieve their promise to end the North-South divide for funding.

"I particularly want to discuss a damning report about local funding we could not fully discuss in the election period. It shows Scarborough has been the biggest government fund loser since 2010 in Yorkshire.

Cllr Siddons. Picture by Richard Ponter

"We all welcome today’s promises that will be reversed and I’d like to discuss their plans for doing that. Councils no longer decide how much money they get, MPs do."

Cllr Siddons went on to explain since 2010 MPs have voted to cut Scarborough’s funds by 65%, the biggest cut in Yorkshire.

He continued: "As Scarborough Council areas’ MPs for the past nine years Robert Goodwill and Kevin Hollinrake voted for Scarborough Council to be the biggest funding loser in the region.

"I am pleased now to hear their and Boris Johnson’s promise to reverse that divide."

According to Cllr Siddons the town's funding has suffered due to no tourism grants and less funding for sea defences.

He said: "Scarborough has always had a “double hit” with its settlement as we get no grant for our tourists and whilst we recognise tourism is vital to the economy of the borough, Scarborough people pay for all the tourism services, litter, toilets and much more.

"Since 2010 we have also been hit by a “triple whammy” and had to sort nearly half the funds for sea defences like the Whitby Piers. Only the EU have been willing to contribute to what was until 2010 a Government bill, leaving local council tax payers to pick up the rest of the tab.

"The Council have independently checked the report’s figures and they are accurate but miss out another recent £ half million cut to our funds making the cuts 65%."