Monday, April 15, 2024

Cuts cost each Thurrock home £500 claims leader Kent

THE LEADER of Thurrock Council says the government’s grant to the borough will have fallen by over £35 million over the next two years compared to 2009-10.

Cllr John Kent was speaking at Wednesday (8 January) evening’s meeting of the council’s cabinet, where he said: “This report tells us that our government grant will fall by almost, £16 million over the next two years – having already seen a cut of £19 million since 2010.

“That is a funding cut of £500 for every single household in the borough.”

He said Thurrock faced having to make further savings of more than £35 million between 2015-16 and 2017-18, adding: “I really do fear these reductions will be even more painful for local people to bare”.

Cllr Kent went on: “Because of that, and because I know he’s in the borough on 31 January, I have asked the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Eric Pickles, to spare us some time on that day for him to go through our books, and for him to suggest where these cuts can be made.

“In Thurrock we have already made sensible savings, looked for efficiencies, we share services, we already share top management where possible – what else can we do without hurting those in most need in our borough?”

Cllr Kent said: “We’re better placed than most because we agreed a two-year budget last February. That was a good move and means we can start seriously looking at the many different ways of working we’ll have to employ, and the detailed hard decisions which will have to be made for April 2015 in the coming months.

“But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be thinking about it now. Christmas and the New Year are out of the way, this is the time when we should all be putting forward our ideas and giving our officers time to consider them.

“The stark reality is that if we want better schools, better roads, decent levels of care for the most vulnerable in our communities, then we will need to look at both what services we provide and how we provide them.

“We will need to find different ways of doing things and look at how we can find more money to make up the overall shortfall.

“Achieving this massive task will mean having to make tough and often unpopular decisions.”

He said: “But we are not alone. For all local authorities 2015-16 is the year the punch will come. I fear for the future of some authorities – not all will survive.”

3 COMMENTS

  1. Government grant is cut by £16k over the next 2 years, but Mr. Kent is saying they have to make further cuts of 35 million in the next 2 years.
    The only way that would be true is if they haven’t made any impact on addressing the previous £19k cut.
    And does he mean it’s £500 per household over the 6 years he is talking about, or £500 over the next 2 years?
    I’m confused!

  2. Cuts left right and centre but still able to squirrel away £8 million in the reserves.

    And has Councillor Kent got his figures right?

    How many household in Thurrock – about 64,000.

    Divide £16 million by 64,000 you get £250.

    I think the simple truth of John Kents ‘cuts’ rhetoric is to soften the blow because he plans to hike everyone’s Council Tax and trying to blame the Government while bamboozling people with figures.

  3. Hopefully TC will raise the council tax this year, so we don’t lose any of our present services.
    Thurrock doesn’t need to be able to boast that it has the lowest tax in Essex!

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