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Knowsley Council Cabinet backs tax increase

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Knowsley Council’s Cabinet has backed the recommendation to increase Council Tax in 2017/18 by 4.99%. Of the proposed increase, 3% will be ring-fenced to go towards funding Adult Social Care services.

Credit: PA

The income raised by the proposed increase in Council Tax will be invested in services that support vulnerable and older people to live independently in their own homes for longer. Over the next three years, the Council has to find £14.8m of savings due to cuts. The increase will mean a £43.11 increase per year on a Band A property.

"The Government’s solution is to get local people to pay for adult social care through an extra 3% Council Tax rise – referred to as the “Osborne Tax”. We have worked hard to come up with the best mix we can of savings and Council Tax rises but it is a difficult balancing act when you are trying to protect key services and deal with funding cuts that will total £100m by 2020.

– Cllr Gary See, Knowsley Council

The recommendation will now be considered at Council on 8th March.

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Knowsley 'will provide more detail of plans to drive up standards in education'

Credit: Press Association

"Knowsley Council is today launching its Education Commission, bringing together local and national leaders in education to identify and address the reasons behind long term underachievement in our schools.

"Some of the findings of this report will form part of that discussion within the Commission.

"However, the Council questions the credibility of the report when its authors are now saying something completely different to when the report was published a few months ago. "In particular, the authors are now making references to grammar schools which were not included in the report in May.

"To be absolutely clear, the Council fundamentally disagrees with the suggestion that grammar schools might be part of the solution to the challenges we face in the borough."

– Knowsley Council

Report author: "white working class children have been left behind by an education system which is not working properly"

The study, which was commissioned by Knowsley Council, described "poor, white working class children" as "bottom of the class" and are likely to stay there.

Those behind the report say children in Knowsley have little contact with others from different social backgrounds.

They say changes are needed at a national-level to ensure children are not left behind.

Phillip Blond is the report author:

Mother of John Greenwood: 'somebody knows'

The mother of John Greenwood who died along with his friend Gary Miller after they were found beaten and hidden under a mattress on a rubbish tip in Whiston in 1980 has said "somebody knows" who is responsible for their deaths.

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Watch: Groom surprises bride with wedding reception dance

This is the moment a groom surprises his new bride at their wedding reception in Knowsley Hall.

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Groom, Tim Wright, 30, told bride-to-be, Sally, that he was going to football practice in the run up to their wedding when in fact he was practicing a complicated dance routine with his friends at a dance studio instead.

Guests looked on stunned as the groom and his pals went from one routine to another at the reception.

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