Friday, 6 January 2012

Funding cuts prompt Council look at ways to protect key services

Lancaster City Council’s Cabinet will consider a number of items related to its 2012 budget on Tuesday 17th January - and it looks like car parking fees may rise as well as charges for using some services. Provisional figures show that the council is facing a year on year reduction in Government support of 11.6%, or £1.5million, in the next financial year. Among the items are proposals for small increases in car parking charges and fees related to environmental health services, while continuing to support arts organisations such as The Dukes and developing funding bids for major regeneration projects in Lancaster and Heysham. The items will be considered in context of the council’s continuing commitment to support local people and businesses in light of the uncertainty over the economy and future levels of Government support. “These are difficult times and the current condition of the economy has left us all with extremely tough choices in managing our budgets," says Coun Eileen Blamire, leader of the City Council. “This is not only true of public bodies such as the city council but in our own households as well. We all have to prioritise our spending and look at areas where savings can be made or we can increase income. “It’s a tricky balance for us because we want to continue to offer good services that benefit local people and the economy, while at the same time keeping the charges which help to fund these services at a level which are fair and comparable. “If we didn’t raise charges in some areas then the knock on effect is that we wouldn’t be able to continue to provide services at the same level as we currently do.” More information on the budget proposals being considered by Cabinet are available here on the City Council web site

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