LAST week, at the annual meeting of Thurrock Council, the leader of the council, John Kent, sent out a dire warning that there were challenging times ahead. Infact even two years ago, cllr Kent was warning that the dire years would be from 2014 onwards.
So it has come to pass that hundreds of council employees have been invited to apply for redundancy.
Understandably, this has caused some confusion in some quarters.
Up in Aveley, it appears that the school crossing patrols have received “invitation letters” which has spread to wild rumour and speculation on social media sties.
At the recent council meeting, cllr Kent said: “We must all remember that when we reduce spending in any area it has many consequences. Services people are used to and expect will change and – in a worst case – disappear altogether.
“If we make cuts that will mean redundancies, so it is important we consider those consequences too.
Cllr Kent continued: “The council had already started the process of seeking voluntary redundancies from staff, but expected that was unlikely to meet the total needed, adding that the council’s cabinet and committees would be busy looking at savings proposals during the coming months.”
A council spokesperson added to the council leaders comment. He said: “Like hundreds of other Thurrock Council staff in the current economic climate and in the face of an estimated £40 million in savings needed, council employees will have received letters asking if they are interested in voluntary redundancy. However, it is the council’s policy to keep school crossing patrols”.