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Tories a laughing stock, but we don’t see the funny side, says Grantham councillor



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Where to start when you only have 400 words?, says Councillor Lee Steptoe, Labour member of South Kesteven District Council for Grantham Earlesfield.

It is now established that the Prime Minister has broken the law, with the possibility of more partygate fines to come. He clings to office like chewing gum on the sole of a shoe. The Chancellor’s credibility has also imploded due to his billionaire wife not paying taxes in this country, just as people are being hit with raised National Insurance, utility bills and the highest inflation for 30 years.

Locally the Tories let a councillor who was publicly racist back into their fold after less than six months, whilst they clean the plinth of the shrine to their heroine that has stood empty for two years, creating an eyesore in the middle of the town. You couldn’t make it up; at least the Iron Lady had convictions.

Lee Steptoe (46585897)
Lee Steptoe (46585897)

The Tories are a laughing stock, but millions across the country don’t see the funny side as the cost of living crisis deepens and puts previously comfortable people in financial peril. Meanwhile, the working poor, the sick and pensioners relying on the state pension will be forced into abject poverty.

Grantham’s excellent Foodbank and newly opened Citizen’s Advice Bureau are going to be in huge demand from people desperate for support. My councillor briefing from CAB reports that nationally five million people will be unable to pay their energy bills this month and this will rise to 14 million in October. In the short term I would suggest to people who are desperate to make ends meet to apply to SKDC for the Household Support Fund, which can help in the form of supermarket and fuel vouchers. Unfortunately, this government scheme is a drop in the ocean and will soon run out.

Another mitigation is the £150 Council Tax rebate but this is only paid to those in Bands A-D and those that do not pay by direct debit (the poor and the old) will have to chase it. These measures are simply inadequate for the tsunami of misery that is going to affect so many. When the general election comes people will be able to vote for a changed, pragmatic party led by a serious politician, Keir Starmer, who will cut fuel bills by £600 with a one off windfall tax on the huge profits of the energy companies. Before then SKDC is up for re-election next year to send a message locally.



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