NOTTINGHAMSHIRE: Have YOUR say on council finances

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If you were running Notts County Council, how would you do things differently if you had to save £77m from your annual budget over the next three years?

That’s what local people, businesses and organisations are being asked, as the county council launches the first stage of its 2015/16 budget consultation on Wednesday 8th October.

The £77m budget gap is due to sustained, on-going reductions in funding the Government provides to the council to provide vital local services.

Over the past three years alone, the council’s Government grant funding has already been reduced by 16% - equal to £43m.

At the same time, the council continues to face increasing running costs due to inflation and a significant rise in demand for many of its social care services, especially as people live for longer with more complex needs.

Coun Alan Rhodes, Leader of Notts County Council, said: ““Doing nothing is not an option. Despite already identifying savings of over £80m in budget cuts, we still need to find £77m by 2017/18 to balance the books. Only by doing things differently and making fundamental changes to the way we operate are we going to protect many of the vital services that some of the most vulnerable people in our communities rely upon.”

The ‘doing things differently’ consultation asks people to have their say on the approach the County Council should take to its £77m budget shortfall.

Responding to the first part of the consultation involves just filling in a short questionnaire, which can be done online at www.nottinghamshire.gov.uk/budget or by calling 0300 500 80 80. You can also fill in a comment card at local libraries.

The complete list of the county council’s budget proposals for 2015/16 will be published in early November and will be followed by a second stage of consultation on the options for change.

The consultation will run until 16th January.