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Labour would end austerity and kick start national investment within first 100 days, McDonnell says

ENDING austerity in the welfare system and public services would be the priority for the first 100 days of a Labour government, shadow chancellor John McDonnell announced today.

He said that Labour’s first budget would be held on February 5 if the party wins the general election this week.

The party pledges that its green industrial revolution plan will see investment flowing into communities that have been neglected for decades.

Mr McDonnell said: “In too many parts of the country, we have been wasting people’s potential.
 
“That’s down to successive governments sitting back and leaving the fate of whole communities at the mercy of market forces.
 
“Good jobs and whole industries that were once the pride of our country have been lost and replaced with dreary, exploitative, insecure and low-paid jobs. Or in some cases no jobs at all.
 
“No wonder people feel disillusioned in politicians. As our manifesto makes clear, turning these two things around will be our number-one priority in government.”

He said there is an emphasis on getting money moving out of Whitehall and the City by setting up new political and financial institutions outside London.

The party in government plans to establish a “national transformation unit” before Christmas and the new national investment bank, regional development banks and post-bank branches — a hybrid of a bank and post office.

Labour also plans to begin bringing key utilities into public ownership under “democratic management” within the first 100 days.

Mr McDonnell said: “We’ll set up boards to run them made up of you: the customer, and you: the worker, as well as representatives from local councils, metro mayors and others.
 
“We’ll make sure decisions are taken locally by those who understand the services — those who use them and deliver them. Meetings will be public and streamed online, with new transparency regulations set higher than ever before.
 
“So you can see if your road is being dug up, why, and for how long.
 
“And we’ll create new people’s assemblies to hold these boards to account and give everyone the option of participating in how their utilities are run.”

The party also pledged to “get Brexit sorted” by starting negotiations for a deal and plan for a “public vote to give the people the final say.”

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