Work by the Green Group of Councillors on the Council’s budget has identified fresh income that the Greens want to see used to protect key services such as the Youth Service and Elderly Care.
Green finance lead, Councillor Ollie Sykes, stated:
“Years of Conservative Government policy have damaged Council finances up and down the country and the local Labour Council is planning to axe essential services to deal with this. Although we cannot rescue their budget, our work has identified enough funding to reverse cuts planned for many of the vital services in our city.
“The Labour administration seems more prepared to take risks with people’s futures rather than with redistributing available money or looking at possibilities for generating more income. Yet our focused budget work around this has identified a potential £2 million and looking at the budget in this way does not rob from one service to pay for another. We want to see the Council use this money to protect key lifelines for our residents such as elderly care or the Youth Service. Our budget approach has centred on our principles of fairness and on the real value of preventative work. All the evidence clearly shows that stopping problems early reduces the demand for more complicated, more high-cost Council services later down the line. Early help services, such as those for young people or children, save much more money than they will ever cost to run. The Council are stacking up future costs by cutting these.
“We are encouraging the Council to up their game and support our budget approach. With the detail out in the coming days, we ask all parties to work with us to protect services and push the Council to look at this budget differently. Vulnerable people, such as the young and the elderly, should not be made to bear the brunt of Council cuts handed down by a ruthless Tory Government.”