Unprecedented council cuts – Priority is to protect local services while making a £15.5m saving.
Plans to make over £15million in budget cuts have been published by Flintshire County Councils.
The draft budget report for 2014-15 outlines the strategy to achieve an unprecedented savings as the council looks to a challenging and uncertain future ahead.
Councillor Aaron Shotton, Leader said in releasing the Cabinet’s budget plans:
“Flintshire like every other council has been placed in a position of financial risk by the UK Government programme of austerity for the public sector.The Council must have the resolve to deal with the situation through swift and decisive action whilst holding to its principles, and duties, to protect local services for local communities”.
In October my Cabinet set out a clear approach to this and coming years budgets, we said we would”
- Protect local services as a first priority
- Challenge hard and reduce operating costs and overheads
- Reorganise the Council with a marked reduction in management costs-reduce overall workforce costs
- Remodel some Council functions-build a longer
- Build a longer term financial plan based on the Council being a lean and-efficient organisation
“None of the changes to services proposed in our budget should have a big impact on communities – unlike announcements some other councils have been forced to make. Neither will we be proposing major hikes in Council Tax or fees and charges. The Council has lived within its means by setting annual Council Tax rises of between 2.9% and 3.5% in recent years and we do not propose to go beyond these limits.”
Colin Everett, Chief Executive said:-
“There will be big changes in the way the Council is structured over the next few months. A new model structure with new groupings of council services and corporate support services, with a streamlined senior management will be introduced to save over £2 million of management costs. The Council will be reducing the size of its workforce to save a further £1.5 million”.
“The budget gap is made up of loss of Government grant called Revenue Support Grant, meeting the costs of inflation and pressures on services such as social services which are no longer funded through the local government settlement, and meeting the costs of the positive investment choices of the Council including borrowing to build new schools such as Holywell, the Connah’s Quay ‘hub’ and a replacement campus for John Summers”.
Meanwhile the budget debate moved to twitter, Councillor Aaron Shotton leader of the Flintshire County Council tweeted:
Flintshire Budget – cutting Management and utilising reserves in defence of vital local services #priorities #principles #flintshirelabour
— Aaron Shotton (@AaronShotton) January 17, 2014
While Councillor Bernie Attridge Deputy Leader on Flintshire County Council went into specifics:
@Mikey_Rowe We will be cutting senior Managment by 50% as a starting point.
— bernie attridge (@bernieatto) January 19, 2014
The budget proposals will be reviewed by the Overview and Scrutiny Committees later this month and early February before finally being presented to the full Council for agreement on 18 February. Spotted something? Got a story? Send a Facebook Message | A direct message on Twitter | Email: News@Deeside.com