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‘Truss playbook’: Labour attacks Susan Hall’s ‘unfunded’ spending plans

Labour have today attacked Conservative mayoral candidate Susan Hall’s “uncosted” spending plans for City Hall as “straight out of the Liz Truss playbook”. Photo: Susan Hall
Labour have today attacked Conservative mayoral candidate Susan Hall’s “uncosted” spending plans for City Hall as “straight out of the Liz Truss playbook”. Photo: Susan Hall

Labour have today attacked Conservative mayoral candidate Susan Hall’s “uncosted” spending plans for City Hall as “straight out of the Liz Truss playbook”.

Hall, who is running for the Tories in the capital against Labour incumbent Sadiq Khan, has pledged – if elected – to deliver policies including scrapping the outer London ultra low emission zone (ULEZ) on day one, restoring the 60+ freedom pass for peak hours every day and to return the Met Police to a borough-based system.

But Labour have now warned Hall’s policies amount to a £515m budget “black hole”, according to the party’s calculations of the cost of Hall’s promises.

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Shadow paymaster general Jonathan Ashworth said: “Susan Hall’s pledges are straight from the Liz Truss playbook – reckless, irresponsible and uncosted.

“With a black hole of more than £500m in her spending plans, it will be Londoners who would pay the price, with huge cuts to services or hikes in council tax and transport fares.”

Ashworth added: “Londoners can’t afford this latest version of Trussonomics to be implemented in the capital. Susan Hall’s proposals are the most irresponsible set of plans from any major party candidate in the history of the mayoralty.”

Labour said Khan has ensured the City Hall budget is balanced by raising council tax by 4.99 per cent – the maximum amount allowed under law – and warned that any further spending would legally require a referendum of the entire London electorate.

Hall’s pledges, the party said, would create a £515,875,000 funding shortfall for the Greater London Assembly (GLA) and accused her of basing them on non-existent revenue.

Her plans could see council tax go up by a further £195.48 on the average Band D bill – or risk cuts to public services, Transport for London (TfL) fare hikes, and even affect the GLA and TfL’s credit ratings and credibility on the financial markets.

A Conservative campaign spokesperson said: “This is desperate stuff from Sadiq Khan’s campaign.

“Susan’s commitments are fully costed and accounted for, much of which will be covered by cutting the ridiculous amount of waste in City Hall and TfL.

“By contrast, Sadiq Khan’s manifesto has around a billion pounds worth of pledges, with no explanation at all as to how he is going to pay for them, and which could only be paid for by cutting police funding and bringing in pay-per-mile.”