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Thursday, 5th Mar 2015 by Charlie Bolton

Letter to the editor: Library Closures

Dear Sir,

I can only view with astonishment your story in which Conservative deputy mayor Geoff Gollop and Liberal Democrat assistant mayor Simon Cook 'raise concerns' about the possible closure of libraries. 

Well, Simon and Geoff, none of us wants to shut down libraries. But I do have to remind you that you are part of the coalition government that has devastated local government funding over the last 5 years.  Your LibDem-Tory coalition government has cut the council budget by tens of millions of pounds. Bristol is in the second year of an £83 million budget cut, amounting to some 30% of the budget.

I would further remind you that, if in power after the general election, the Tories will cut a further £25 billion from pubic expenditure and the LibDems will cut £16 billion. Goodness only knows what will be left of local government in Bristol if you get your way.

So I have to ask you, given the scale of cuts which have been imposed by your coalition government, what on earth did you expect to happen? Are you seriously pretending that somehow these cuts are not happening? Do you seriously think local government can just get away with it?

I note local Liberal Democrats, in particular, are campaigning against some of these closures. In view of your complicity in the cuts, this is an act of hypocrisy of the worst sort that reflects badly on you and your parties. 

Yours

Councillor Charlie Bolton
Bristol Green Party

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