The Mayor of Middlesbrough, Ray Mallon, has attacked the government over public sector cuts. The council has been asked to save £72m over five years. Mallon says the reductions will have a devastating effect on the town.
He made his name through his writing, as the creator of Billy Elliot, but Lee Hall indicated he is ready to move from words to actions to save ten Newcastle libraries earmarked for closure.
The playwright had people on their feet at a campaign meeting when he called for protesters to occupy libraries.
However, the council says it simply cannot afford to keep the libraries going, because of budget cuts.
Meanwhile in Middlesbrough, councillors discussed whether they can afford to freeze council tax. The mayor Ray Mallon opposes the proposal, saying it would leave a black hole in the council's finances.
The Bishop Auckland MP Helen Goodman has claimed that the scale of cuts being imposed in the region are even worse than those faced by the Spanish people.
Ms Goodman, who worked at the Treasury before becoming a MP, said the initial wave of cuts in 2010 took more than 7% out of the region's economy.
She also said the local councils here were facing cuts 3 times deeper than some councils in the South East.
Her remarks were challenged by the Conservative MP for Guy Opperman.
He accepted that there were difficulties ahead but pointed to recent falls in unemployment in the region.
The City of Newcastle ASC has had swimmers competing at international level every year since 1982, but it may not survive if its home, the City Pool in the city centre, is closed because of council budget cuts.
Chris Cook trained at Newcastle's City Pool, which is due to close next year because of council budget cuts.
David Cameron says he wants to end the "entitlement culture" and that scrapping housing benefit for under 25's will help to achieve that.Read the full story ›
Home repossessions in some parts of the North East are more than three times the national average. Darlington and Durham had some of the highest numbers. Weak economic growth and austerity are blamed, with people being more affected by Government cuts due to dependency on public sector employment.
The MoD confirmed more than a thousand military personnel will face compulsory redundancy as part of cuts to the armed forces.Read the full story ›
A dark cloud hangs over the region today with the news that more than a thousand armed service personnel are facing compulsory redundancy.
The Defence Secretary Phillip Hammond confirmed today that the bulk of the cuts will come from the Army. Overall the Ministry of Defence plans to shed 3,800 posts
A spokesman for MoD said there was "still some way to go" to bring the size of the Army down to 82,000 and confirmed that decisions on how to achieve those cuts "are yet to be taken."
Details of exactly what regiments will be affected have still not been released. But the North East and North Yorkshire are traditionally areas where the Army recruits heavily. Catterick Garrison in North Yorkshire meanwhile is the largest British army base in the World.
MPs have clashed over possible job losses in the fire service. A host of Labour MPs questioned ministers from the Department for Communities & Local Government. Teesside MP Alex Cunningham said Cleveland fire service has to deal with the highest industrial risk in Europe. 180 jobs are at risk there.