Conservatives forced to admit they were out by £5 million in figures used

13 Oct 2023
Borough Hall in Bedford

Bedford Borough Council’s Finance Portfolio Holder was forced to admit an almost £5 million error in what he said at two recent Council meetings.

Faced with an unprecedented £12 million forecast overspend under this now Conservative run-council, he publicly told the Mayor and Cabinet that this was a similar position to last year. He explicitly quoted a figure of £11.3 million for last year.

He then repeated the claim at a Council Scrutiny meeting, where following questions from members of the committee a Senior Council Finance Officer confirmed the correct figure was £6.5 million, not the £11.3 million the portfolio holder was using. He later admitted that he had been wrong.

The forecast overspend facing the council this year under the Conservatives is close to double the figure at the same time last year.