Councillor hits out at Osbourne’s local wage plans

A city councillor criticised Chancellor George Osborne’s budget announcements, stating that localised pay would “adversely hit” workers in Lincoln.

Osbourne’s intention is to set regional or localised pay rate for public sector workers, set according to average private sector wages.

Nurse and Carholme ward councillor Karen Lee believes that this move would affect over 17,000 workers and businesses in Lincoln.

She said: “Lincoln is a relatively low paid economy when compared to the South East of England.

“We have over 17,000 public sector workers across Lincoln and if the government reduce their real terms pay then it will have a huge impact.

“To take so many wages out of the local economy will undoubtedly have a knock-on effect on our private sector too, harming many of our hard-pressed retailers.

“This is a divisive and devious strategy from George Osborne to make ordinary working people to pay for his income tax cuts for the wealthy bankers who caused the global crash.

“Our current Conservative MP needs to start putting the interests of the City of Lincoln ahead of the City of London and speak out against this destructive policy.”

Lincoln’s Conservate MP Karl McCartney argued the budget will actually help families in the region.

He said: “The budget will help hard-working families in our city, county, region and country and shows that Britain can earn its way in the world.

“I am particular pleased that the Personal Allowance will increase to £9,205. This change will lift an additional 66,000 people in the East Midlands out of income tax.

“I also warmly welcome the announcement that almost £45 million will be invested in our region, delivering over 1,200 homes and supporting almost 2,500 jobs in construction and related sectors.

He added: “We must be prepared to confront our problems, to create jobs, growth and prosperity and a brighter future for the next generation.

“I believe this budget will help to do exactly that.”