Depressing Calderdale Council budget meeting approves massive cuts budget – without knowing where cuts will fall

LibDem Councillors last night voted with the Tory group to approve a 3 year Council budget that passes huge Coalition government cuts to local authority funding onto the people of Calderdale.

The new Council Budget is vague about massive cuts it commits to in 2017/18, which include £2.6m cuts to unspecified “discretionary services”, as well as £2.5m cuts to Adults Health and Social Care and Children’s and Young People’s Services, as a result of  “new ways of working”.

“New ways of working” is about turfing staff out of Council employment and getting them to set up as a social enterprise, contracted to deliver Council services on less money.

Discretionary services are those which the Council doesn’t have a statutory duty to provide, but which the public relies on in our day to day lives – such as libraries, winter road gritting and children’s centres. Continue reading

Calderdale Council plans further massive cuts to Adult Social Care

Calderdale Council’s Budget Proposals 2015/16 – 2017/18 include swingeing cuts to local services, in order to “balance the budget” in the face of massive and unprecedented cuts by central government to the local government support grant.

Labour has put forward an alternative budget that includes the use of prudential borrowing and Council reserves to invest in income-generating public services, like affordable housing and business support – but it still proposes making major cuts as laid out in the Tory/LibDem Budget.

Both the Labour and the Tory/LibDem budgets include big cuts to Adults Health and Social Care (AHSC) services.

£2.5m is the target for cuts in 2017/18 to be achieved through cutting Council social workers loose from the Council and setting them up as a “mutual” business. Both the LibDem/Tory budget and the Labour budget include this measure. Continue reading