Laura Sharman 13 November 2012

Southampton’s ‘painful’ budget includes nearly 300 job cuts

Southampton City Council has announced it will cut 279 full-time jobs in a bid to reduce the £20m deficit in its budget.

The council has published its ‘painful but necessary’ budget, which will also reduce library opening hours, stop youth services and see the closure of a children’s residential unit.

Leader of the council, Richard Williams, said: ‘This budget is painful, but necessary. We have managed to safeguard the most essential services, increase income equitably and where reductions have to be made, they have been made with care and with regard to maintaining the best possible service for the most possible people.’

The budget lays out savings of £18.1m, with nearly half coming from efficiencies and income generation. The council has also identified savings of £3.5m in its services contract with Capita in the coming financial year.

The council also explained the original funding gap has been caused in part by a reduction in Government grant of at least £9m, inflation and interest payments of £9m and the impact of one-off funds to balance the 2012/10 budget of £6m.

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