Latest Public Sector News

20.12.18

Nottingham City Council slams government austerity as it cuts further £22m and 27 jobs

Nottingham City Council needs to slash £22m and an initial 27 jobs from its budget, and has blamed government austerity for repeated cuts to services after its main funding source has been reduced by three quarters since 2013.

The city council has hit out after its main government funding has been cut from £127m in 2013 to just £25m for next year, and has criticised the government’s decision to demand councils reduce their budgets further by reducing or changing services.

Nottingham CC has now announced £22m of saving proposals, including a 2.99% rise in council tax and the initial reduction of 27 jobs, with more likely.

Bus services will be reduced, a range of changes to adult social care will be implemented, and charges will be increased across a range of council services.

The council says that it is protecting key services such as children’s centres, libraries, tackling crime, and supporting the elderly – which have been cut by other struggling councils – but said the government’s austerity is “placing greater burden” on its finances, with council tax now having to stretch to cover more and more services.

With 70% of the authority’s entire budget now committed to children’s services and adult social care, the government is expecting additional increases in council tax to fund the police and to meet rising demands.

The council’s leader, Jon Collins, said the government had once again “drastically reduced” the money available for council services in Nottingham.

He commented: “We don’t want to increase council tax but the government has left us with no other option if we are going to continue providing vital local services.

“What makes this worse and totally unfair is the blatant favouring by government of Conservative-led councils in affluent southern areas which have received much more in grants, despite areas like Nottingham needing it more.

“They have also received special grants to soften the blow of cuts which places like Nottingham need more but missed out on altogether. It means setting this budget has been extremely difficult and we don’t take any pleasure in making decisions which detrimentally affect local service users.”

 Image credit - Edward Smith/EMPICS Entertainment

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