Prime Minister Boris Johnson has stated that the extra £60m offered to Greater Manchester will be “distributed between the boroughs”.
He made the announcement in a live address to MPs in the House of Commons this afternoon during Prime Minister’s Questions (PMQs).
It comes after Greater Manchester it was confirmed yesterday evening that Greater Manchester would be forced into Tier 3 under the government’s new three tier coronavirus (COVID-19) restrictions system.
Tier 3 restrictions will come into force in the region at 0.01am on Friday 23rd October.
Mr Johnson made the declaration in response to leader of the opposition Sir Keir Starmer’s question of “what will struggling workers in Greater Manchester do?” after Mr Starmer referred to if the Prime Minister was “seriously saying” he would take a Tier 3 area out of Tier 3 with the R rate above one.
Mr Starmer then asked about staff and self-employed people in Greater Manchester and accused the Prime Minister of “bargaining with people’s lives” and “dividing communities”.
Mr Johnson responded stating that Greater Manchester has already had £1.1bn in support for business, £50m to tackle infections in care homes, and £22m for local response since the pandemic began, but added that Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham “turned down” the offer of £60m to support workers.
He then went on to pledge: “That cash will be distributed to the boroughs of Greater Manchester.”
Sir Keir Starmer then expressed his frustration that the Prime Minister was able to “find” money for several other projects – including Test & Trace and “a garden bridge that was never built” – but “can’t find £5m for the people of Greater Manchester”.
He accused him of a “grubby take it or leave it approach” to talks with regions, saying “it’s corrosive to public trust to pit region against region”.
“We need a one-nation approach,” the Labour leader said.
For the latest information, guidance and support during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in the UK, please do refer to official sources at gov.uk/coronavirus.