Liverpool council is preparing to issue 1 Section 114 notice in June. Faced with a coronavirus ‘bill’ of £78 million, extra costs and loss of income, the government has provided only £34 million emergency funding. At the same time Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor has estimated that the region will have received less than half of the £239 million required to weather the coronavirus crisis. The government has allocated £102 million, enough only for the next three months.
Mr Rotheram said: “You can’t say ‘whatever it takes’ and when it comes down to it, it’s ‘whatever we decide you can have’.
“Our local authorities are already battered by a decade of austerity and they were told they could have some money to put things in place to tackle COVID-19, and then that promise is watered down. It’s just not good enough. I think the government needs to go back to what its original promise was.”
The Local Government Association, which represents councils across the country, has already warned that without a “cast iron public commitment” that Westminster will foot the coronavirus bill, local authorities could fail in large numbers.