January 16, 1987 INDEX

'Tories to blame'


50 percent riseexpected


A MASSIVE 50per cent rates riseis on the cards forWaltham Forestresidents.

Labour LeaderNeil Gerrard admitted this week thatanything less wouldmean services standing 'still with noimprovements in thenext financial year.

And he blamed theprevious Tory regime,. who he said usedmoney returned tothe council after theGLC was disbandedto keep down lastyear's rates, insteadof saving it.

Now the newcouncil has to find£2.5 million toreplace this, he said.

The rate supportgrant has also fallenshort allowing only 3per cent for inflation.and coupled with thepending pay riselikely to be awardedto teachers, another£2.5 million will alsohave to he found,added Mr Gerrard.

"We have got bigproblems. Simply tokeep going what weinherited last Mayrequires a 30 per centrise -- and that's justto stand still -- anyless and we would bemaking cuts.

"Really what wehave been left with bythe previous councilis a level of basicservice that is justinadequate."

Tory Party leaderMichael Lewis calledthe rise "ridiculous"and claimed it couldbe as high as 70 percent.

And he describedthe Labour leader'saccusation that theTories were to blameas nonsense.

"There was £6million in thebalances last yearand we gave £3million back to theratepayers."

The rate rise is notexpected to be finallyset until next month.
Yellow Advertiser January 16, 1987.