Councils face more cuts after spending review

Councils face more spending cuts

Councils face more spending cuts - Credit: Sarah Allison

COUNCILLORS have hit out after the Chancellor announced a 10 per cent cut in the local government resource budget in a spending review statement today (Wednesday).

The review which includes cuts of 11.5 billion covers the financial year from April 2015 to March 2016, a period that includes the next general election.

George Osborne said in his speech that he will fund councils to freeze council tax for the next two years but the local government resource budget would be reduced by 10 per cent. He claimed that when changes affecting local government are taken into account including local income and other central government funding, local government spending would be reduced by around two per cent.

Sharon Taylor, leader of Stevenage Borough Council, said: “This is on top of the cuts that local government has already had despite it being one of the most efficient areas. We cannot continue to provide the excellent services that people expect with ever shrinking amounts of money.”

Cllr Terry Hone, North Herts District Council’s deputy leader and finance portfolio holder, said: “Given that we have already had to make £9.3 million of savings in the last eight years, these further cuts make the task of balancing our books much more difficult. However although the cuts are unwelcome, they are not unexpected and we will be doing all we can to continue to protect frontline services.”

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