Liberal Democrats have uncovered a scandal involving hundreds of people in Redcar & Cleveland Borough being denied help by the Labour Council.
The Government has given the Council £429,000 for Discretionary Housing Payments following the removal of the spare room subsidy.
But with only ten weeks of the financial year left, the Labour-controlled Council has used less than half of the money to help people who need it.
Cllr Chris Abbott, Lib Dem Housing Spokesman, commented:
“It’s a scandal, especially as local Labour activists have been scaremongering and condemning the Government as hard-hearted.
“George Dunning’s Labour Party must explain whether they are being incompetent or whether they are depriving people of help for party political reasons. It’s one or the other.
“If people need help and the Government has given the money, they should get it.”
Redcar MP Ian Swales added:
“The Government knew this policy would cause initial problems for some people. That's why they gave a large sum to the Council.
"I'm shocked that the Council has so much left. It looks like they’ll have to hand money back to the Government when they should be supporting hard pressed local residents.”