Green Party condemn “socially ignorant” Brighton and Hove Conservative MPs and Councillors defying their own party policy by refusing to support a council tax referendum in Brighton

The Green Party today condemned Mike Weatherley, the Conservative Member of Parliament for Hove and Portslade, and Simon Kirby, the Conservative MP for Brighton Kemptown -for going against their own party’s policy on council tax referendums.

As a response to central Government cuts, the minority Green administration in Brighton is proposing a referendum of local people on a council tax rise to protect services for the city's most vulnerable.

Both Brighton and Hove Tory MP’s appear to support the Labour party in Brighton in opposing a referendum [1].

Weatherley and Kirby’s opinions are in direct opposition to those of Communities Secretary Eric Pickles that councils are "dodging democracy" by not holding referendums on council tax rises and his deputy, local government minister Brandon Lewis who said: "This government has given local residents new powers to veto high council tax rises. We should trust the people."

Green Party LogoNatalie Bennett, the leader of the Green Party, said:

"As Greens we believe that decisions should be made closest to the people who are affected. Instead of letting Whitehall impose cuts on vulnerable people in Brighton & Hove, this announcement takes the decision to the people.

"Three quarters of county councils and a third of other councils have already indicated that they plan to increase council tax to meet growing need and mitigate the worst of Westminster's cuts. Only the Green Party is taking a courageous stand and we call for other councils to consider letting the people decide."

[1] www.mikeweatherleymp.com/2014/01/16/mike-slams-green-council-tax-referendum/

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