£225k extra funding for Lewes District Council ‘hugely welcome’ says MP

MP Maria Caulfield has welcomed news that Lewes will benefit from a share of £900million in additional funding for local councils.
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Mrs Caulfield confirmed Lewes District Council is to receive an extra £225,000 from the Government to continue providing vital services during the Covid-19 outbreak.

She said this means since the start of the pandemic, Lewes has received £1.59million in extra direct support from the Government.

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“The £225,000 announced is hugely welcome and will ease financial pressures on Lewes District Council and ensure it is able to continue providing vital local services this winter,” said Mrs Caulfield

Lewes MP Maria Caulfield in the House of CommonsLewes MP Maria Caulfield in the House of Commons
Lewes MP Maria Caulfield in the House of Commons

“Just like we said we would stand behind people whose jobs are at risk – with over £200 billion so far to project jobs, incomes and businesses throughout and beyond this pandemic – this Conservative Government is keeping its promise to local authorities and ensuring they have the resources they need to continue supporting people.

“Residents in Lewes District pay the fourth highest council tax in the country, so I hope that Lewes District Council will use this money wisely to support local people.”

Mrs Caulfield said Lewes also stands to benefit from a further £100million which will be used to establish a new fund to support council leisure centres that are most in need, in recognition of the ongoing challenges many local authority leisure centres are facing.

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She said: “This means that councils will have a £1billion extra in funding this winter, with more details of the support for leisure centres to be set out shortly.

“The funding has not been ring-fenced, meaning local leaders will be able to determine how to spend the additional funding in order to best protect public health, local vulnerable people and the running of vital services.

“In total, over £4.6billion of the £6.4billion in additional government funding made available to councils has not been ring-fenced, reflecting the Government’s view that local authorities are best placed to determine local priorities.

“This is the fourth announcement of extra direct support for local authorities since the start of the pandemic.

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“It forms part of an unprecedented package of support for councils, which also includes up to £465million through the new Local Alert Level system, £300million to support Test and Trace and £30million for enforcement and compliance.

“Councils can also claim funding through a compensation scheme for lost income from sales, fees and charges and further additional support will be made available to areas placed under Tier 3 restrictions.”

Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick said: “Since the start of the pandemic, we have backed local councils with the funding they need to support their communities, protect vital services and recover lost income.

“This extra £1billion funding will ensure that councils have the resources that they need over the winter and continue to play an essential role on the front line of our response to the virus while protecting the most vulnerable and supporting local businesses.”

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Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden added: “It’s vital that we keep ourselves fighting fit through the winter months and local authority leisure centres are crucial to this. This £100 million fund will help keep leisure centres across the country open. I urge leisure centres to bid for the money and people to make the most of these precious local facilities.”