Subject: TaxPayers’ Alliance Bulletin 11th April 2008
TaxPayers’ Alliance Bulletin – 11th April 2008
Cost of Crime in London hits £3 billion
Yesterday, the TPA released our contribution to the London Mayoral Debate, an in-depth study of the cost of crime in London. As well as providing breakdowns for different types of crime on a borough-by-borough basis across the capital, we calculated that crime now costs Londoners over £3 billion, more than £400 a head on average. Calculating the social and economic cost of different types of crime allows us to give a fair weighting to different offences that better reflects the impact of more serious crimes such as assault than the easily manipulated raw figures the Government prefers to use. The report makes a compelling case for strengthening local democratic control of policing, radically cutting police bureaucracy and learning the lessons of international policing successes such as New York. You can read the report here.
For those of you outside London, never fear, we haven’t forgotten you! A national study into the cost of crime for every part of the country will be coming out over the summer – this is the first step towards giving people the power to see in detail how crime affects their neighbourhood and being able to hold the police and the criminal justice system to account.
Crime and policing is set to be the big issue of the Mayoral election, so we were pleased that the report was picked up by:
The Sun: – London crime costs us £400 a year each
BBC News Online: – Crime ‘costs each Londoner £400’
Holding snooping Poole Council to account
We need your help to hold Poole Council to account. We wrote here describing how Poole Council used an anti-terror law to spy on a family they suspected of living outside a school catchment area. This, I’m sure you’ll agree, is a gross misuse of power. Is this where our Council Tax increase has gone, to fund people to spy on us?
You can find all the contact details of Poole’s councillors on the blog. Please do hold them to account and ask them whose idea it was to spy, if they have been invading other people’s privacy other than the family in question and whether they intend on putting more taxpayers under surveillance. It might be worth asking your own council if they’re using the same law to monitor taxpayers in your borough.
NB: THIS BLOG has already flagged up this last matter, see the Last Post!
Protests and Leaflet Days
In addition to this, we’ve recently had a Council Tax protest, a stall at a Farmers’ Market and have stuffed thousands of envelopes to get our message out. And we want to do more. If you or someone you know is thinking of becoming a Council Tax rebel, let us know by contacting us [firstname.lastname@example.org] so we can give you advice and information. Plus we can put you in touch with other experienced rebels who can provide further support.
Do you want a leaflet day in your area? If so, let us know by contacting our Grassroots Coordinator Tim Aker so we can rally our supporters and get a good crowd out for the TPA. Alternatively if you want any leaflets to hand out down your street let us know so we can post them to you. Finally, if you know anything about your council misusing its power or wasting your money, let us know so we can mobilise and campaign on it. It’s time to even the balance between the taxpayer and the taxman!
Investigation into the Speaker’s expenses
Thank you to all those people that got in touch to express their support after last week’s news that we have succeeded in getting an investigation into the Speaker of the House of Commons and his family’s expenses claim. There have been further rumblings about his behaviour in recent days, so it will be interesting to see how the saga unfolds. We will of course continue to keep you updated.