Resort set to be hit hard by fresh cuts

Money worries: The cuts will be felt at Blackpool Town Hall
Money worries: The cuts will be felt at Blackpool Town Hall
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Savage Government cuts to town hall budgets will leave Blackpool among the worst affected councils in the country.

All three Fylde coast councils are facing a reduction in their spending power next year, as the Government imposes yet more cuts.

Fylde Council leader Susan Fazackerley

Fylde Council leader Susan Fazackerley

Treasurers at Blackpool Council are still analysing the settlement, but say they expect to have to make savings of £20m next year.

The cuts to the authority’s income from the Government mean a reduction in spending power per household of £113 – or 4.7 per cent.

On average, councils across England are facing cuts of 1.8 per cent.

Coun Fred Jackson, deputy leader of Blackpool Council, said: “As always, we will now spend a few days analysing the information, to get a greater understanding of what it will mean for Blackpool.

Town hall planners have approved a care home scheme

Town hall planners have approved a care home scheme

“As we’ve said previously, we expect to be having to make savings in excess of £20m.

“We will announce how we intend to make those savings early in the new year.”

Wyre Council is also facing above average cuts to its spending power of three per cent, while Fylde Council’s is set to fall by 1.5 per cent.

It means cuts of £8.77 and £4.39 per household respectively. However, Wyre Council said its two main income streams from the Government – the Revenue Support Grant and non-domestic rates –look set to be slashed by £1m compared to this year, equivalent to a 15.6 per cent decrease.

Coun Peter Gibson, Leader of Wyre Council, said: “It is a tough settlement, but we’ve budgeted for it and don’t envisage any cuts in the services that we provide. It is our intention to freeze council tax for the fifth year in a row in 2015/16.”

Coun Susan Fazackerley, Fylde Council leader, said: “We are now crunching the numbers, but the initial indications are that it is broadly in line with what we expected.”

Town halls’ challenge as they face spending cuts

The local government settlement figures will leave town halls to crunch the number before setting out their plans to balance the books in the New Year.
While Labour claims the Government’s cuts will have the biggest impact on those in greatest need, none of the Fylde coast councils were surprised with their settlement.
While a handful of councils have had their spending power increased – some by as much as three per cent – the worst affected have seen theirs drop by 6.4 per cent.