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Council cuts will hit every aspect of life
5:10pm Friday 8th February 2013 in Ledbury
EVERY aspect of daily life in the county is now in the shadow of the axe as the full extent of Herefordshire Council’s proposed cuts for 2013/14 is revealed this week.
The root and branch review programme is a key element of the council’s 2013/14 budget and medium term financial strategy.
It still has to factor in huge year-on-year losses in funding from central government.
Cuts identified in the review are expected to save just over £9 million, with the sum helping cover a budget shortfall that totals £10m this year alone.
This is caused by a £5.5m slash in central government funding and another £4.5m lost from other external sources. Ideas from the wider public, invited through the Make Your Own Cuts initiative launched last month, do not yet feature in the plan.
Each service area will offer alternative management options, service re-commissioning and re-procurement, early intervention and streamlining initiatives to offset the impact of the cuts.
A final decision on the 2013/14 budget and medium term financial strategy lies with the full council on February 18.
WHAT COULD BE CUT CUSTOMER SERVICES
* Reduced opening hours for libraries and information centres and the merging of where they can operate from – including the registration service.
* More emphasis on self-service channels and electronic contact.
* Cutting subsidies and high cost care packages in favour of community support and ‘re-ablement’ initiatives.
* Reducing demand for home and residential care.
CHILDREN AND YOUNG PEOPLE
* Closing or transferring youth and outdoor education centres.
* Closing the Connexions building.
* Cuts to education psychology, early years, schools improvement, children’s centre services and substance misuse service.
TRANSPORT AND TRAVEL
* Reductions in public transport and full cost recovery for schools transport.
* Collection of refuse and recycling to alternate weekly.
LIVING AND WELLBEING
* Removal or reduction of subsidies to Halo, the Courtyard and Visit Herefordshire.