Councillor accuses Hucknall MP of 'turning his back' on residents after Torie vote against windfall tax on oil and gas firms

A Hucknall councillor has hit out at town MP Mark Spencer after a Labour motion to introduce a windfall tax on oil and gas companies as part of plans to tackle the cost of living crisis was defeated in the House of Commons on Tuesday night.

Coun Lee Waters (Ash Ind), who represents Hucknall on both Nottinghamshire County and Ashfield District Councils, accused Mr Spencer of ‘turning his back on Hucknall residents.

Members voted against the motion by 310 votes to 248 – although 59 Conservative MPs abstained.

However, it is not known whether these were MPs rebelling against the Government or just simply unable to vote at the time.

Coun Waters accused Mr Spencer of 'turning his back on Hucknall residents'

Coun Waters said: “I am appalled at Hucknall’s Tory MP Mark Spencer, he has voted against helping the poorest across our town.

"This would have been a sizable help to those struggling between heating or eating.

"Many Hucknall residents don’t do either.

"I would be interested to know Mr Spencer’s justification for his vote.

"As a wealthy farmer, he can’t possibly understand what’s it’s like to be scared of opening rising bills, filling up his ministerial car or doing a food shop in Tesco and wondering if he has enough.

"Mr Spencer never speaks for Hucknall – he never votes for Hucknall.

"He has turn his back on Hucknall residents at a time when they needed him most.”

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Many MPs, including the Chancellor Rishi Sunak, have argued that a windfall tax on profits of energy firms will harm investment in UK.

However, during the debate before the vote, Mr Sunak did not completely dismiss the idea, saying ‘no option was off the table’ and windfall taxes were not the ‘simple and easy answer to every problem, but ‘we are pragmatic’.

He said: “What we want to see is energy companies who have made extraordinary profits at a time of acutely elevated prices investing those profits back into British growth, jobs and energy security.

"But, as I have been clear and have said repeatedly, if that doesn't happen soon and at a significant scale then no option is off the table."

However, former Labour leader Ed Milliband MP, who opened the debate chided the Chancellor, saying: “I think a massive u-turn is lumbering slowly over the hill.”

The Dispatch has contacted Mr Spencer for comment.