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Who Pays?

Sir Sandy Bruce-Lockhart, former Conservative leader of Kent county council and chairman of the Local Government Association, has urged the Chancellor to repeat last year's payment of £200 in council tax aid per pensioner household.

He claims that since 1997, the Chancellor had deliberately used council tax and other "stealth taxes" to fund Labour's huge increase in public spending, placing a disproportionate burden on council tax payers, and especially on pensioners and those on fixed incomes.

This comes at a time when the Spectator Magazine reveals that Forty four per cent of the working population are now employed directly or indirectly by the public sector or depend on state benefits for much of their livelihood.

The state-dependency research, based on 2005 official figures -Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) & Office for National Statistics (ONS) - and broken down by parliamentary constituencies, showed that more than 60 per cent of people work for or live off the State in some of Britain's poorer areas and has led to suggestions that the government has deliberately built up the public sector to boost the number of people who vote Labour, which has also increased the overall public sector payroll by 784,000 since 1997.

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