Devil in detail of Chancellor’s Spending Review

Mark Williams, Member of Parliament for Ceredigion, has warned of serious concerns over the details of George Osborne’s Autumn Statement which could hit some of the most vulnerable in society.

Mark said: “The Chancellor’s Spending Review may have been good theatre for those in the Conservative Party, but it is little more than smoke and mirrors to those in our community who will be hit by the damaging cuts to our welfare safety net.”

Mark did however welcome the freeze in fuel duty and in particular that there would be no further cuts to police budgets and additional funding for the health service, specifically mental health provision for which Wales should benefit.

He added: “Welcome though the news was that police budgets would not be cut, and it was Osborne’s white rabbit out of the hat, we should not kid ourselves that police forces are still facing unacceptably difficult decisions which will impact on the delivery of police services. This is particularly true in large rural police area like Dyfed-Powys.

“The introduction of a funding floor for Wales is something which my Welsh Liberal Democrat colleagues and I were strongly pushing for while in Coalition, and the removal of a costly referendum on tax varying powers is welcome.

“However, there are still serious concerns over the Government’s commitment to cutting £12bn from the welfare budget. My overriding concern remains the impact of these huge cuts. While the Government has retreated on tax credits after such strong opposition, they are continuing with damaging cuts to Universal Credit, changes to Employment and Support Allowance and Housing Benefit for the young which many of my constituents rely on.”


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