Mark Whitehead 20 July 2018

Northamptonshire CC to axe 'hundreds of jobs’ due to funding crisis

Services will be cut to the legal minimum and 'hundreds of jobs' axed as Northamptonshire imposes further cuts to deal with its funding crisis, the council has warned.

Cabinet leader for finance Michael Clarke said £35m this year and a further £50m of savings were needed next year to stop the council going under.

He told a finance scrutiny meeting at the trouble-torn Conservative council that 'some very serious and unpopular service cuts' were on the way.

He said 21 of the county’s 36 libraries were under threat, many of the county’s roads will not be gritted this winter, road maintenance will be affected and Trading Standards will be vastly reduced.

The warning comes as a new chief executive, Theresa Grant, previously chief executive at Trafford council, is due to take up the role next Thursday.

Cllr Clarke told the meeting: 'To put it in biblical terms, there will be much wailing and gnashing of teeth.

'There will be lots of dissatisfaction and unhappiness and it is a tough call for everybody involved, but we are seeking to stabilise the council.

'We have to take an iron chancellor view of things as we don’t have reserves to fall back on.'

Widespread cuts have already been made to services this year on top of a series of cuts in previous years.

It is expected the council will be abolished in May 2020 and a unitary governance system introduced to replace Northamptonshire's current two-tier system.

A spokesperson for the council told LocalGov: 'Faced with growing demands for statutory services and a very difficult financial situation, further tough decisions are needed in order to deliver a balanced budget.'

For more on the background to this story check out our feature, 'Where next for Northants?'

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