The comments made by Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London, on 22 December 2021.
This budget is about focusing on the issues that matter most to Londoners, working to build a safer, greener, fairer city. This means investing more in the police and tackling crime, building more genuinely affordable homes for Londoners, supporting businesses during this difficult time, skilling up Londoners for well-paid jobs, tackling air pollution and the climate emergency, and providing more opportunities for young Londoners to reach their potential.
The pandemic is continuing to have a serious impact on London’s finances and the Government is still refusing to properly fund our public services, particularly the Met police, Transport for London and the London Fire Brigade. Raising council tax by £2.66 per month is not something I want to do, but the Government is leaving us with no choice if we are to help prevent the collapse of TfL and ensure our police officers and firefighters have the resources they need.
Despite the difficult financial situation we face in London, I’m excited about the incredible programmes this budget will help us to fund next year, targeting our resources where they can make the biggest difference to Londoners. This includes: offering free training to anyone who is unemployed or low paid, providing a mentor to young Londoners in need, building more homes Londoners can actually afford, and investing millions on green projects so that we can continue to lead the way on tackling air pollution and climate change.
I’ll never forget that London gave me the opportunities to go from a council estate to being Mayor of the greatest city on earth. As we seek to navigate and recover from this terrible pandemic, I’m determined to use this budget to help build London back as safer, greener, fairer and more prosperous city – putting the dark days of the pandemic behind us and building the better and brighter future all Londoners want and deserve.