By Matthew Barrett
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A new report released today by the Back Boris campaign reveals the impact every family in London will face if Ken Livingstone was to win this May's mayoral election - £348 in council tax increases, and an increase in the Congestion Charge.
The report, entitled "Can't Afford Ken", notes that Livingstone has made 24 spending promises that cost more money than is in the budget. These spending commitments have been made either in public speeches or in documents after he was selected as Labour’s candidate. They include a transport fare cut, a pledge to replace the withdrawn EMA scheme, a London-wide lettings agency, an "Air Quality Improvement Fund", a "Cinema Discount Card" for young people, and, bizarrely, a party in Trafalgar Square just for the Portuguese-speaking diaspora.
The report projects the total cost of the 24 pledges over four years to be £2.7bn, with the cost estimates based on public sources, Labour's own estimates, or independent estimates. To raise this amount of money, Livingstone would need to find more funds from the council tax precept, and more revenue from TfL.