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A year on from the report of the urban task force, the government has done little to help the inner cities, Lord Ro...
A year on from the report of the urban task force, the government has done little to help the inner cities, Lord Rogers told BBC Radio Four's Today programme this morning.

Lord Rogers, who headed the task force, said: 'We would like to have had urban resource centres set up, we would like to have had more funding....while John Prescott is doing his best, there is no realisation of the problems across departments'.

He said he was calling on prime minister Tony Blair to recognise that it is no good putting money into schools and hospitals if the urban areas around them are crumbling and people are trying to move out.

Lord Rogers pointed out there had been no movement on measures proposed by the task force, such as the abolition of VAT on redevelopment work.

Meanwhile, shadow environment secretary Archie Norman said in a statement:

'John Prescott came to power pledging Labour would do more for inner-cities and urban regeneration, yet after three years, taxes have gone up while spending on urban regeneration is down by£400m.

'The quality of life in our inner-cities is still in decline; police numbers are down and people don't feel safe enough to walk around their neighbourhoods. It is all very well millions of pounds of grants being poured into politically correct schemes, but as Lord Rogers makes clear, this is wasted if you can't put enough police on the streets.

'The only things Prescott has delivered are a series of quangos, regional bureaucracy and taskforces, and yet he is not delivering on the recommendations made by the very person put in charge of the urban

regeneration taskforce, Lord Rogers.'

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