BATTLE lines have been drawn up between the three main political parties on Kirklees Council.
Labour have accused the Lib-Dems of “toadying” to the Conservatives – but the Lib-Dems reckon Labour councillors are bereft of ideas and so won’t work with them.
Meanwhile the Tories remain in charge.
Last Wednesday councillors re-elected the Tories to run Kirklees Council following elections on May 1.
The Conservatives have 22 of the 69 seats, followed by Labour on 21, the Lib Dems on 19, the Greens on four, the BNP on two, with one independent councillor.
The Lib-Dems and Greens voted for the Conservatives to carry on running Kirklees, while Labour abstained.
Kirklees Labour leader Clr Mehboob Khan said: “The Lib-Dems are continuing their policy of toadying up to the Tories.
“At Wednesday’s meeting they voted with the Tories time and time again. The Lib-Dems followed their Tory masters on every issue.
“They have obviously been thrown a few crumbs from the top table.”
Labour deputy leader Clr Ken Smith agrees.
He said: “The Lib-Dem leadership should have made it clear at the local elections that they would behave like Tory poodles.
“If Lib-Dem voters could have seen the party’s performance at the meeting they would feel that they have been duped because, in effect, their vote has gone to the Tories.
“What is worse is that the leadership of the Lib-Dem group knew very well before the election that they would be taking this approach – because it’s what they did last year – but they deceived their voters.”
But Kirklees Lib-Dem leader Clr Kath Pinnock rejected the criticism.
She said: “When the council is balanced you have to make arrangements between the parties. That’s what we’ve been doing for the past 10 years.
“Last year we had a working arrangement with the Conservatives which allowed us to secure £25m for Lib-Dem priorities.
“We achieved funding for things like bio-mass boilers in council buildings, mobile youth buses to take services to young people and a safer roads programme to help pedestrians.”
Clr Pinnock added that talks with Labour had not been productive.
She said: “It seemed to us that they didn’t have any ideas or proposals. They clearly weren’t interested in running the council.”