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Bristol Mayor responds to Government's Spring Budget 2017

Marvin Rees, Mayor of Bristol, said: “Meeting the growing demands of providing social care for the elderly, vulnerable and children is one of the major challenges currently facing councils. An extra £2bn for social care authorities over three years does not fully bridge the gap or provide a solution which works in the long term. We therefore welcome commitment to a green paper later this year, but need to ensure we work with Government on this. We don’t yet know how the Government will pay for this fund, so the risk remains that they could give with one hand whilst taking away with the other.

“Tucked away beneath the headline announcements today was confirmation that the budget for the Department for Communities and Local Government is shrinking from £8.2bn last year to £5.5bn next year. This already forms part of our future budget assumptions, but it represents  a huge cut and sends a worrying message about the future.

“The need to invest in growth and business is important, particularly as the country faces uncertain economic times with our exit from the European Union on the horizon. Despite the Chancellor’s positive growth forecast and upbeat economic projections, any benefit isn’t felt by everyone in society. We need real investment in our people and communities to stem decades of marginalisation and growing inequality.

“It is too early to say exactly how today’s budget announcements will impact Bristol but we will be working through the detail in coming days and weeks. I remain committed to working with others in Bristol, my colleagues in other cities and the government to support our priorities and build a place where nobody is left behind.”