Ellie Ames 17 November 2023

Derbyshire denies facing ‘bankruptcy situation’

Derbyshire denies facing ‘bankruptcy situation’ image
Image: loocmill / Shutterstock.com.

Derbyshire County Council said ‘serious challenges’ lie ahead despite its progress in tackling its financial shortfall.

A report released in September had forecast £46.4m overspend for the current year.

The latest report, due to be considered by the cabinet on 23 November, says the overspend has been reduced to £33m through measures including the use of reserves, freezing all but essential recruitment, reducing overtime and the use of agency staff, and only carrying out health and safety repairs on properties.

Derbyshire also said that for non-essential expenditure, it had ceased or delayed procurement for supplies and services and postponed projects still in the planning stage.

Council leader Barry Lewis said: ‘We took immediate action in September to try to avoid more serious future consequences and due to the hard work of staff across the council steady progress is being made which is to be welcomed.’

He added: ‘Although we are still in a challenging position this is not a bankruptcy situation, and we will continue to do all we can in the second part of the financial year to ensure we get back on track and reduce the overspend further.’

Derbyshire is consulting residents on its budget and services.

Earlier this month, a survey found that England’s county and unitary authorities are ‘running out of road’ to prevent insolvency, with one in 10 not sure they can balance their budget this year.

If this article was of interest, then check out our features: 'Preventing future Section 114 notices' and 'Intervening at the local level'

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