We’re being ripped off!

Posted: July 3, 2010 in Broken Britain

How we are being ripped off as people fight the credit crunch.

Supermarkets are changing the size of their punnets, by ditching the 1lb (454g size) for a slightly smaller 400g box. But their prices have not been reduced by an equal amount.

Asda last year sold a 454g box for £1.98 but this year a 400g box is offered at £1.98.

Sainsbury’s last year offered Taste the Difference strawberries in 400g boxes for £3.99. This year Taste the Difference fruits are beings sold in 300g boxes, but at the same price.

Tesco has ditched all their 454g boxes in favour of 400g boxes.

The shrinking punnet sizes follows other food producers cutting the size of their drinks bottles, peanut packets, puddings, and cheese slices – but not their prices.

Stuart Kirkwood, from Carlisle, used the Freedom of Information Act to discover that one local council car park generated £11,890 over the last three years by not providing its customers with change.

Lower Viaduct car park in Carlisle, Cumbria, is council owned and charges customers 90p for a one-hour ticket. Motorists paying with a £1 coin are short changed by 10p. A motorist paying for a two-hour ticket at £1.80 with two pound coins is diddled out of 20p.

Parents who stick to the rules and don’t take their children on holiday in term-time can end up paying almost double for their trip.

A one week self-catering holiday at the four-star Trivoli Victoria apartments, in the Algarve, in mid-August was £3,854 – 86 per cent or £1,784 more than in mid-July. The price of foreign breaks increase by an average of 38 per cent in August. But even tourists who stay at home face a rise of 30 per cent.

A two-bedroom caravan at Haven, in Presthaven Sands, North Wales costs £698 for a week at the height of the season, 75 per cent or £299 – more than in mid-July.

Greedy MPs are at it already, they have pocketed more than £1million in the last eight weeks.

Yesterday Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority, IPSA, revealed that it is receiving more than 900 calls and emails from MPs and their staff every week, the vast majority of which are understood to be complaints and demands for cash.

The watchdog said it had handed out £644,000 in cash advances to 168 MPs to tide them over before they receive their expenses. The payments are worth an average of just over £3,800 for each MP.

A further 93 members have been granted loans totalling £171,000, an average of £1,838 each. The bill tops £1million once £277,000 of expenses are added.

Although Croydon Council are preparing huge spending cuts, its ruling Tories are backing moves which could see massive increases in allowances for senior councillors.

The pay rises, which are being put off for a year, would see council leader Mike Fisher’s “salary” going up from £53,314 to nearly £65,000 a year. Cabinet members’ pay would increase from the existing £43,339 a year to £45,377.

The pay packages were agreed by the council’s corporate services committee on Wednesday, whilst the council is working on finding £70 million of cuts and imposing a pay freeze on its staff.

They are also cutting the basic allowance paid to ordinary councillors, from £11,880 to £10,597. But at the same time four more Conservatives, heading smaller committees and bodies, will be paid an extra allowance for the first time.

So the rich get richer and the poor get poorer.


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