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Harborough Council could have to cut £1.6m from budget

Harborough District Council is facing its toughest financial year yet, says leader Blake Pain

Harborough District Council is facing its toughest financial year yet, says leader Blake Pain

 

Harborough District Council is facing its toughest financial year yet in 2015-16.

That is the stark warning from council leader Blake Pain.

Cllr Pain warned: “It’s an exceptional year.

“It looks like we need to save between £1m and £1.6m, depending on Government circumstances.

“That’s a big proportion of our total budget of under £11m. It’s going to be the most challenging budget we’ve ever had to face.

“I’ve been involved in building services, and now we’re having to look at things very differently, and dismantle some of the work we’ve done. That’s not nice for anybody.”

Cllr Pain said it was far too early to say where any cuts would fall, but said some difficult decisions would have to be made.

He said he could not completely rule out redundancies either, but stressed that he believed for good frontline services you need good public sector employees.

He said areas where he would hate to see cuts included building control, waste management, recreational areas and youth services.

And he stressed that the council had already found inventive ways of producing services more cheaply, for example by going into partnership with other councils in areas like revenue and budgets, telephones and legal support.

He said: “It’s a challenge but we’re not daunted by it.”

Cllr Phil Knowles, leader of the Liberal opposition group on the council, said: “We urgently need to see the financial information on which these revelations are based.

“It’s a time for calm heads, because we need to look at how these figures have been arrived at.

“We need to know exactly why the council is struggling in the way that it is.”

He said he was particularly concerned that redundancies had not been ruled out, because of the possible impacts on people’s livelihoods.

 

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