LGA calls for radical transformation of public services
Council leaders have called for a ‘radical transformation’ of public services in order to manage the long-term cuts announced in yesterday’s Budget.
The Local Government Association (LGA) said it was ‘extremely worried’ about the new cuts to funding for local services in 2014/15, particularly as councils are already dealing with a 33% reduction in funding from central Government.
It warns that any new cuts to local services are a ‘false economy’ as they can lead to higher costs in other parts of the public sector and limits the role councils can play in promoting growth.
Sir Merrick Cockell, chairman of the LGA, said: ‘The Government needs to reconsider its approach ahead of the 2015/16 spending round. The only way of maintaining public services in the face of the proposed long-term cuts is by undertaking a radical transformation of the way they are provided and paid for. This has to be based on the idea of allowing local areas to design services around the needs of people and communities.
‘The extension of the Community Budgets programme to make it available to other local areas is a major step. Councils can help deliver such a programme and have a central role in deciding how funding should be spent at the local level. Transformation is already happening in local government and it now needs to be matched across the entire public sector.’
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