Council leaders have warned of a growing North-South divide in the way the Government funds local authorities.
New figures suggest that the Government’s spending plans for 2015, unveiled earlier this year, will mean councils in Yorkshire see their spending power reduced by £63 per person compared to £38 per person in the South-East.
If the trend continues until 2018, the amount lost in Government cuts in Yorkshire will be £220 per person in contrast to the £45 per person in the South-East.
The figures have been produced by SIGOMA, a body representing urban councils including Leeds, Wakefield, Kirklees and Bradford.
SIGOMA chairman Sir Steve Houghton, leader of Barnsley Council, said: “What is clear with the latest settlement is the gap between more affluent areas and more deprived areas, and in particular between the North and the South, is getting wider and because the Government has set up the system that gap will get bigger.
“I think this is a conscious decision. The Government models the impact so they know who is getting hit and who is not getting hit. This is not an accident, they know exactly what they are doing.”
Councils in the North say they are being hit harder because social need has become less of a factor in the way money is distributed.
Sir Steve said councils were not asking for handouts but help to invest in projects which would kickstart the economy in deprived areas.
He said: “The way out of our problems is not through better benefits it is by investing in economic projects in the North so we can get people back to work and improve their quality of life.”
However, the Government last night disputed the SIGOMA figures.
A Department for Communities and Local Government spokeswoman said: “Funding is fair to all parts of the country - rural and urban, north and south, metropolitan and shire – ensuring the smallest reductions for the councils most reliant on government support and it will reward councils that strive to improve their communities.
“This year Sheffield has a spending power of £2,200, Leeds £1,873 and Hull £2,272 – all more than £1,814 for households in Wokingham.”