I am completely astounded that Councillor Winterton from the Labour Party wants to see a cross-party campaign to look at the PFI costs at King’s Mill (Chad, 29th August). Can he recall a meeting on 10th May 2012 at the hospital where I challenged the then director with regard to the PFI and he said nothing on the subject, nor has he commented on the three letters I have published in this paper. The previous government (Labour) entered into large PFI contracts to provide infrastructure projects around the country. We are still paying for these projects today and will continue to pay for these for years to come. King’s Mill Hospital was built under a PFI contract. The finished cost of the project was £326m, but under the PFI contract the bill to the taxpayer will be £1,598 billion and the final payment, will be made in 2041. The cost being five times the actual capital expenditure of the project. This year’s unitary charges alone are £34.9 million. These charges will escalate upwards to £71.4 million by 2040/41 and will be taken from the hospital budgets first before the hospital considers treating anyone. In Britain there are 717 PFI contracts with a capital value of £54.7 billion, but the overall ultimate cost will reach £301 billon by the time they have been paid off. We’re sitting on a PFI debt timebomb and the sheer scale of the burden paints a grim picture for the future of our public services. Basically the last Labour government privatised the buildings but nationalised the debts. Where was the councillor to stop his last government cranking up the national debt?
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