- Councils in Essex have received more than £240 million in new funding since March 2020.
- This funding boost is part of the £803 million of extra support that the East of England has received.
- The Conservative Government has given councils in England over £7 billion in additional support through the pandemic, with £3 billion more confirmed for next year.
Rebecca Harris MP has welcomed new analysis showing that local authorities across Essex have so far received an extra £240 million to support vital local services during the Covid-19 pandemic, with further funding confirmed for next year.
Over half of this funding has not been ringfenced, meaning local leaders can decide how to use the additional funds and which local services to boost investment to. This could include counselling services, delivering essential supplies to vulnerable families, and ensuring cherished green spaces are well maintained and covid-secure.
Local authorities have also received over £2 billion in further grant funding since March last year to deliver specific schemes, such as providing emergency support for rough sleepers, preventing children going hungry, setting up local test and trace services and measures to make care homes, high streets and town centres Covid-secure.
In total, the Government has provided local authorities across England with more than £7 billion in additional support and introduced a range of measures to help council’s manage pressures on their finances created by the pandemic, worth billions more. A further £3 billion will be allocated to councils from April onwards.
Commenting on the findings, Rebecca Harris MP said:
“Councils across Essex have done an incredible job providing local services and keeping people safe under the most difficult of circumstances, but we recognise the financial pressures they have faced.
“That’s why I am delighted that the Government, which I am proud to support, has supported council leaders across Essex with an extra £240 million since March last year, helping to protect vital services and ensure our council has the resources it needs to support our community.
“This shows that the Conservatives are delivering on their promise to support vulnerable families and local people during the pandemic, and I am confident this will continue.”
Commenting, Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick said:
“From the start of the pandemic, we committed to ensuring that councils had the resources they needed to step up and support their communities.
“That commitment remains undimmed, which is why we have provided councils with more than £7 billion of additional funding for Covid-19 expenditure, and will continue to ensure they have the resources they need to provide vital local services and held their communities build back better from the pandemic.”
9 in 10 Local Authorities in England Now Enrolled into Community Testing
New figures show that than 9 in 10 local authorities across England have now signed up to the Government’s community testing programme and are providing rapid tests for people who cannot work from home – breaking chains of transmission and helping us slow the spread of this deadly virus.
Since the community testing programme was launched in December, local authorities have undertaken incredibly innovative work to rapidly get programmes up and running in local areas, using their local expertise.
232 local authorities are now rolling out community testing, covering a population of around 42 million people and identifying thousands of positive cases in people not showing symptoms, who could be unknowingly spreading the virus. Over 2.2 million rapid-turnaround tests have been carried out by councils already, which has identified 44,000 cases – breaking thousands of chains of transmission.
Local authorities have done a heroic job on the frontline during the pandemic, supported by more than £8 billion in extra funding, and the Government will continue to give them the support they need to deliver for their communities, keep people safe and help defeat this virus.
For more information, please visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/9-in-10-local-authorities-in-england-now-enrolled-into-community-testing.
Locally, Castle Point residents can get tested at a number of locations. For more information on COVID-19 testing in Castle Point, please visit: https://www.rebeccaharris.org/covid-testing.