MPs join protest against Brown's cash grab

June 29, 2008 9:36 PM
Tom Brake and Paul Burstow join Sutton Campaigners outside Parliament

Ten million of Sutton tenants' rent is used to improve properties in other parts of the country each year

Local MPs Tom Brake and Paul Burstow joined Sutton campaigners from the Moonlight Robbery Campaign outside the Palace of Westminster on Wednesday to present the Prime Minister, the Rt Hon Gordon Brown MP with an invoice for £17.45bn.

The invoice represents the amount of money the Treasury has taken from council rents from 1997 to 2005, rather than using it to improve social housing.

Gordon Brown's cash grab has led to a lack of investment in social housing, with the government's own figures showing that there is a £2.2bn short fall in money needed to properly manage, maintain and repair current social housing.

Campaigners want the Government to keep to its promise and ensure that housing revenues are not used to make a profit.

Local campaigner Jill Rosselli said, "the Government consistently refers to council housing as subsidised. Nothing could be further from the truth. Just like the 10p tax rate change, with rents, this government is taxing poor people more and more. Our rents should be used to properly maintain and repair our homes."

Tom Brake, who has been campaigning on behalf of local rent payers who are losing the equivalent of 19 weeks rent a year said, "The Moonlight Robbery Campaign demonstrates that the problems faced by Sutton's tenants are not isolated and it's about time the Government ensured that council rent money was used to improve social housing rather than filling the black hole in Gordon Brown's finances.'

For more information about the Moonlight Robbery Campaign visit moonlightrobbery.org.uk

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