Austin Macauley 19 January 2016

County cuts could signal end of services, say council leaders

County council leaders have urged the Government to either postpone cutbacks or provide emergency transitional funding – or else risk the end of non-statutory services.

The County Councils Network (CCN) said its members would see a 34% cut in core funding as a result of the local government finance settlement. The average across the country is 28%. Such deep cuts will have 'severe consequences for local services', said the CCN.

Cllr Paul Carter, CCN chairman, said: ‘Our evidence shows that counties see the biggest reduction in funding due to the changes being made in the distribution of local grants.

‘We are committed to making further efficiency savings to help the Government's deficit reduction plan, but these changes go too far and disproportionately impact our areas.

‘We have made our concerns clear to Government and have put forward practical solutions. I know Government is in listening mode.

‘This proposed settlement will potentially have severe consequences to the delivery of local services and to our NHS partners unless Government listens to our concerns and those of our MPs.’

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