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Recent updates

  • Cllr Hazel Watson
    Article: Mar 11, 2017
  • Cllr Hazel Watson outside County Hall
    Article: Mar 9, 2017

    Liberal Democrats on Surrey County Council have called for the Leader of the Council, Councillor David Hodge, to resign or face a Motion of No Confidence following the release of emails last night which revealed he had written to the Prime Minister asking for more cash "so that Surrey will continue to be a heartland for the Conservatives". In another email he bemoaned the fact that the Conservative Government "ties my hands and fails to support...(the)...largest Conservative Group in UK".

  • John Orrick
    Article: Mar 6, 2017

    Liberal Democrat county councillors in Surrey have expressed their anger as the Conservative County Council was forced to reveal cuts of £346K to library resources over the next two years.

    The Conservative-administration plans to reduce the county's library resources budget, used to buy items such as books and DVDs, by £346K which amounts to a cut of 22% by 2019. The reduction in the resources budget for libraries follows significant cuts in the amount of library stock owned by the county council, which has dropped from 1,597,830 items in December 2013 to 1,386,752 items in March 2016 - a reduction of 211,078 items (13%).

  • NHS
    Article: Feb 11, 2017

    • 38 Trusts facing serious pressure
    • More beds closed due to Norovirus
    • Cancelled operations up 15%
    • 9 hospitals had no available beds on some days in February

    Analysis by the Liberal Democrats of the Weekly Situation Report for the week ending 5 February 2017 reveals that:

    • 38 trusts are facing major pressure that could lead to poorer care. The NHS themselves describe this as leaving organisations unable to deliver comprehensive care. There is increased potential for patient care and safety to be compromised.
    • Bed occupancy rates were 95% or 96% every day between 1st February and 5th February - significantly higher than the official 'safe' threshold of 85%.From the 1st-5th February 3,517 beds were closed due to Norovirus.
    • 21,249 operations were cancelled at the last minute for non-clinical reasons. This is 15% up on the previous year. 1551 of those cancellations still had not been treated within 28 days.
  • Article: Feb 11, 2017

    Tim Farron writes to Theresa May to secure renewed commitment to taking 3000 unaccompanied child refugees

    Dear Theresa,

    Yesterday during your statement on the Informal European Council I asked you if you would guarantee that your Government would continue to take unaccompanied child refugees from Europe under the Dubs scheme (section 67 of the Immigration Act 2016). Your failure to give this reassurance in your response yesterday was concerning and I hope that in your response to this letter you can clarify the Government's position on the Dubs scheme.

  • Cllr Hazel Watson outside County Hall
    Article: Feb 11, 2017

    Liberal Democrats in Surrey today claimed victory as the Conservatives cancelled their planned 15% tax rise in the face of overwhelming opposition from Liberal Democrat councillors and Surrey residents. However, Cllr Hazel Watson, Leader of the Liberal Democrat County Councillors, condemned the Conservative county council's budget as a charade, as the Tory administration pushed through £123 MILLION of unspecified cuts to council services.

  • Norman Lamb MP
    Article: Feb 4, 2017

    Liberal Democrats in Surrey have written to the county's 11 Conservative Members of Parliament, asking them to back a cross party initiative on the future of social care and how to fund it.

    In the letter, Cllr Hazel Watson, Leader of the Liberal Democrats on Surrey County Council, has asked the 11 Surrey MPs to back plans by Norman Lamb MP, the Liberal Democrat Care Minister in the previous Coalition Government. He is calling on the government to establish an NHS & Care Convention, which will look for a long-term solution to the crisis in health and social care funding. The plan is backed by 25 MPs from all parties, and the supporting statement was also signed by Dr Dan Poulter MP, former Conservative Health Minister, and Liz Kendall MP, Labour's former shadow care minister. The Prime Minister has now met with Norman Lamb and a group of cross party MPs to discuss the proposal further.

  • Surrey 15% tax bombshell
    Article: Feb 4, 2017

    SURREY CONSERVATIVES want to increase your council tax by a whopping 15%. The Financial mess they have got us into is now so bad that this is the only way they can see of preventing even more huge cuts across the board. In simple terms, we don't have enough money to pay for the services we deserve.

    THIS TORY GOVERNMENT has to take some of the blame. They have slashed government funding coming into the county by a huge amount. What is really infuriating is that Spelthorne, like the rest of Surrey, puts far more money into the National Economy than it takes out. Now they are taking even more and, if we want the services we need, then as far as the Tories are concerned we can pay extra. Remember, along with the other Surrey MPs, YOUR MP voted for this. Why didn't he stand up for Spelthorne instead?

  • Article: Jan 30, 2017

    The Liberal Democrats will vote against Article 50 unless the people are given their say on the final deal.

    Commenting on today's Article 50 judgement at the Supreme Court, Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron said: "I welcome today's judgement. But this court case was never about legal arguments, it was about giving the people a voice, a say, in what happens next.

  • Hazel Watson
    Article: Jan 27, 2017

    Liberal Democrats on Surrey County Council have today launched a petition against the 15% increase in council tax being proposed by the Conservative administration, the largest in the country and 9 times the rate of inflation.

    If approved, this unprecedented increase would trigger a county-wide referendum on the proposals, with voters going to the polls on the same day as the county council elections in May of this year. A yes vote would add a 15% increase a year to bills for Band D properties and would still result in millions of pounds worth of cuts to essential services. A no vote would result in even more damaging cuts which is why Liberal Democrats have consistently called for a more appropriate level of funding from central government to the county council to help avoid large cuts to vital services for Surrey residents.

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