Published: October 20, 2010
Council reassures residents over government funding cutbacks

Sedgemoor District Council has this week tried to reassure residents in the Burnham-On-Sea area that it is committed to protecting front-line public services, where possible.

The council's comments come at the same time as the government's Comprehensive Spending Review announced today (October 20th), which will lead to financial cutbacks.

"Sedgemoor is committed to continuing the delivery of high quality, low-cost services despite a much tougher financial climate," council spokeswoman Claire Faun told Burnham-On-Sea.com.

"We have been planning for large scale savings and efficiencies for well over five years and have a managed process in place."

She added: "In May 2010, the government announced a 25% cut in spending for government departments over the next four years as part of its emergency budget."

"Finance officials took the prudent view that the council had to assume that it would also be hit with a similar size cut. Therefore, Sedgemoor is assuming an annual 6.25% (£625,000 a year) cut in the money that it receives from central government over the next four years and has planned on that basis. This is in addition to the predicted funding gap for each year."

"Whilst there has been much speculation, there has not yet been any formal announcements revealing the full extent of the cuts and Sedgemoor is not expecting to get any detailed news from the government’s Comprehensive Spending Review (CSR) on October 20th."

"Finance officials are expecting to have to wait for the detailed figures until November or early December when the provisional government grant figures are issued."

The council's annual budget has already identified a £1.3 million funding gap, due to a reduction in income from investment interest due to low interest rates, the loss of specific government grant funding, the loss of income from planning fees and car parking, the continuing cost of concessionary bus fares and low council tax rises over the past 10 years.

 


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