10 FEB 2014
Swansea outlines proposal to cut £26m from budget
From: Insider Media Ltd., 10th Feb 2014
Swansea Council has outlined proposals to cut £26m from its budget in the coming financial year, which include raising council tax by 5 per cent and launching a community fund.The local authority unveiled its plan to cope with an expected shortfall of £12m in Welsh Government funding and £14m of extra spending pressures, following four months of public consultation. Among the measures proposed, Swansea Council recommended raising council tax by 5 per cent. It also detailed plans to launch a £300,000 Community Transformation Fund to provide business planning assistance to groups seeking to set up community services
In addition, the budget proposed investing £1m in extra funding for roads and pavements, preventing the closure of any residential care home before April 2015, putting the closure of Pennard Library on hold, and reviewing all council fees and charges.
The council also set out its intention to reduce the number of potential redundancies by stopping the use of agency staff where possible and making greater use of fixed-term contracts.
Councillor Rob Stewart, cabinet member for finance at Swansea Council, said: “The council is doing everything it can to protect jobs. In the past our focus has been on reducing management costs to protect the frontline and we will continue to do that. “If we take action now to restructure the council to be smarter, leaner and more efficient it’ll mean our services will be more sustainable and we’ll be able to protect jobs in the long-term.”
Swansea Council’s budget proposals will now be considered by cabinet.