Northamptonshire County Council has agreed its core spending priorities at a Full Council meeting today (Thursday) as part of its budget recovery programme.
The spending priorities include a list of core services, such as safeguarding vulnerable children and adults, providing statutory public health services, and meeting the critical and substantial needs of older people.
The list of core services was compiled following last week’s Full Council meeting and in response to the issuing a second Section 114 notice last month.
The county council says £60m to £70m of savings will be required this financial year in order to achieve a balanced budget.
At today’s Full Council meeting, members also agreed the proposed budget recovery action plan, which outlines a number of measures required to significantly reduce spending at the authority.
These measures include extended controls on spending, property rationalisation and a transformation task force to identify cost reductions in line with the council’s agreed priorities.
County council leader Cllr Matt Golby said:
“The budget recovery action plan and the approval of our core services demonstrates our commitment to making the difficult but necessary decisions to stabilise our budget.
“We have a clear plan in place for how we are going to do this, and the spending priorities we’ve now agreed as a council will be used to assess all spend in the council and identify where savings can be made.
“We know that 70 per cent of the council’s spend is through contracts with third party suppliers, and a large piece of this work will be to review all of these contracts against the new priorities on a contract by contract basis.
“This will not be an easy process and there will be difficult decisions ahead, but we are determined to protect services for the most vulnerable in our communities while bringing the council’s spending under control.”
The agreed core services also include sufficient maintenance of highways, footpaths, verges, street lighting and traffic signals, a statutory trading standards service, a comprehensive and efficient library service, and a limited number of household waste disposal centres.
See a full list