Sussex

Brighton and Hove City budget approved after Green deal

Hove Town Hall
Image caption A deal struck between Green and Labour council leaders saw Brighton and Hove City Council's budget passed

Brighton and Hove council tax bills are set to rise by almost 3% after the city council's budget was approved at the end of a seven-hour meeting.

The minority Labour group needed support of the Green party to pass its budget following the defection of one of its councillors to the Tories.

Council tax will rise by 2.99% - up to £1,879 for a band D property.

Green councillor Phélim Mac Cafferty said: "We have pushed to improve the budget being proposed."

The revised budget was approved after several hours when Labour councillors conceded a deal with the Greens to reverse several of its proposed cuts.

The Local Democracy Reporting Service reported £500,000 which was earmarked for the redevelopment of Brighton Town Hall will now be used for investment in "sustainability and carbon reduction".

Labour leader Daniel Yates said: "We need to deal with the climate emergency facing the city and create a fund for those who wish to fight climate change."

'Watermelons'

Following the announcement of the deal the Conservative members left the chamber.

On returning Conservative leader Councillor Tony Janio described the situation as a Labour and Green coalition, referring to councillors as "watermelons" - meaning green on the outside and Labour red on the inside.

A council spokesman said: "The full amount for the average band D council tax for 2019/20 will be £1,879.03 (a rise of £73.05 from the year before)."

A total of £1.7m from the council's £900m budget will go towards city-wide improvements and local transport.

Another £10m will go towards supporting the homeless and rough sleepers, including a year-round night shelter.

Mr Mac Cafferty said: "Unlike the Tories, who see fit to hand down austerity year upon year, and a divided Labour who have brought forward no new ideas, it is time for a Green vision for the future of our city that puts our communities first."

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites