Swansea outlines proposal to cut £26m from budget

10 FEB 2014

Swansea outlines proposal to cut £26m from budget

From: Insider Media Ltd., 10th Feb 2014
http://www.insidermedia.com/insider/wales/108077-swansea-outlines-plan-cut-26m-budget

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

Pennard Library

Pennard Library

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.

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We have listened

24 JAN 2014

‘We have listened’: Swansea’s ruling Labour group alters proposals on care homes, parking charges and school crossing patrols

From: South Wales Evening Post; Saturday January 24, 2014
http://www.southwales-eveningpost.co.uk/listened-Swansea-s-ruling-Labour-group-alter/story-20496147-detail/story.html

CITY leaders in Swansea insist they have listened to the public after rowing back on a number of controversial budget proposals.

From care homes to car parking, libraries to lollipop men and women, Swansea’s Labour administration has gone back to the drawing board.

And it said this was ample proof that its public consultation on the budget proposals, which ended on Wednesday, was no sham.

“People accused us about not being serious about the consultation,” said councillor Rob Stewart, cabinet member for finance.

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Pennard Library

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“But this demonstrates that we are serious, and that we do listen and change our position.

”The Labour administration will publish its revised budget proposals shortly.

They will be debated by full council at an earlier than planned meeting on February 11.

Mr Stewart said the revised proposals were:

– A commitment not to close any residential care homes before April 2015.

– Giving Pennard library campaigners a further eight months to look at different ways of funding the service, plus a commitment to review library services throughout Swansea to match provision better with demand.
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