The latest proposals to reduce services have been outlined by Derbyshire County Council as it prepares to enter the seventh year of Government austerity cuts to local council budgets.
Cabinet members will meet next Tuesday (January 26) to propose how the council might make cuts of almost £70m over the next two years, including:
- Carrying out a review of children’s centres which could result in the closure of up to 32.
- Reducing funding for community transport services from July 2016 and using the council’s reserves for Dial-a-Bus and Active Travel in the short term while proposals for a new ‘demand responsive’ transport service are consulted on and considered.
- Cutting the money available for home to school transport for pupils over 16 with learning difficulties or disabilities, under-fives and some eight to 11-year-olds.
- Restructuring staffing in the countryside service and looking at alternative ways of running Hayfield and Tapton Lock Visitors Centres.
- Reducing the money available for Aiming High short breaks for disabled children and young people with a further proposal to consult on cutting all funding for these breaks from October 2016.
The proposals are on top of £170m of cuts the council has already made to services since 2010 and many of them will be subject to public consultation.
Leader of Derbyshire County Council Councillor, Anne Western, said: “Cutting services is the last thing anyone involved in local government wants to do – these are quality services that have taken years to build up, run by skilled and dedicated staff and valued and relied upon by local people.
“But we simply have no choice. If we don’t balance our books then the Government would take over.”
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