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Mid Worcestershire MP Peter Luff was in the Commons last Wednesday to hear the long-awaited Spending Review delivered by George Osborne, the Chancellor of the Exchequer. Commenting afterwards, Peter assessed what it all means for his constituents.

“The legacy of the previous government has meant that we have had to make extremely tough decisions - decisions that will affect each and every one of us. Fairness was at the heart of the decisions we have taken and I am happy that the overall balance is right. Yes, some pretty deep cuts are going to be made to some services to stop the country going bankrupt, but there are still plenty of positives in this review for Worcestershire.

“For example, many of my constituents have been affected by serious flooding and I welcome the commitment to spend £2.1 billion on flood management over the spending period. This will provide better levels of protection for around 145,000 households in England. Many of my constituents have suffered hugely in both Droitwich and Evesham as well as in a host of villages. I will write to the Environment Secretary pressing the need for help for urgent local schemes like the one planned for Charlton.

“My post bag has been full for a long time with the entirely legitimate complaints and concerns of the victims of the Equitable Life scandal, and I’m really glad that they will now finally have their rightful compensation. I expect some of the victims would have liked even more help, but in very challenging times I think the compensation package strikes the right balance between their legitimate expectations and the taxpayer.

“I have been really concerned about the unfair funding in our county’s schools. This should have been sorted out by the last government when overall funding was rising – but instead things got worse. So I was very encouraged to hear that school funding will rise in real terms, albeit modestly, in each year of the Spending Review. This rise should make it easier to address the unfairness our schools face and I will continue to fight for a proper funding for Worcestershire’s schools.

“I know that there will be many individuals who feel concerned that the changes to benefits will make their lives more difficult, and I stand ready to help them in my surgery. I have been struck overall, though, by the welcome the people of Worcestershire have given to reforms of the welfare system that will ensure people are always better off in work. Like me they think it’s just not right that families who are far from well-off have to pay taxes to keep others in a better standard of living than they can earn for themselves.”


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