Tue, 14 Jan 2020
WEST Berkshire Council has said it will not be making any cuts to public services this year.
The final figures of the council’s budget are still being wrapped up, but the Newbury Weekly News understands that the local authority will not be consulting on any cuts proposals.
It is, as yet, unclear as to whether any council tax increases are being planned or if any savings will be found internally.
Since 2010, the council has been forced to make more than £40m of savings due to a huge reduction in government funding.
This has led to public services being cut and reductions in grant funding to local groups, including the Volunteer Centre West Berkshire and Citizens Advice West Berkshire.
Last year the council increased council tax for the third successive year as part of its plan to make up a £10m shortfall.
The majority of the money was found internally, through retendering contracts and making eight positions redundant.
However, around £1m was proposed to come directly from cuts to services and included charging residents for garden waste collections.
In 2017/18, the council had to find £8m of savings and saw parking charges increase across the district.
The year before saw a savings target of £17.5m, with £10.8m worth of savings and cuts to 38 public services, including bus services, libraries and restructuring children’s centres into family hubs.
This year’s budget is late to be finalised because of the General Election last month.