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Tories defend Boris' Olympic funding cuts

PUBLISHED: 13:00 20 October 2009 | UPDATED: 15:05 05 October 2010

THE Tories have hit back at criticism that Boris Johnson is axing funding for Olympic projects in London s East End. Last week Labour s London Assembly member John Biggs criticised the To

By Else Kvist

THE Tories have hit back at criticism that Boris Johnson is axing funding for Olympic projects in London's East End.

Last week Labour's London Assembly member John Biggs criticised the Tory London Mayor for cutting for cutting a £1.6 million skills and jobs scheme for the five host boroughs, and scrapping a £170,000 programme to support disabled people into Olympic jobs.

Mr Biggs also slammed Mr Johnson for cutting £2m of funding to High Street 2012-a project aimed at sprucing up Whitechapel Road, Mile End Road, Bow Road and High Street Stratford.

The cuts were made after a £160 million shortfall was discovered in the London Development Agency's budget

Tory London Assembly member Andrew Boff said: "As a LDA board member during Ken Livingstone's mayoralty John Biggs failed to expose this debt and it took Boris to throw some light on the secretive culture of the agency.

"If people are wondering why the LDA now doesn't have enough money to support these schemes they should ask John Biggs what on earth he was doing while he was sat on its board."

An LDA spokesman said they are proposing to invest £4.6 million in a series of improvements along the High Street 2012 route running through Tower Hamlets and Newham. He said the agency also continues to invest in job training.

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