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After £245 million savings, Norfolk residents are urged to take part in …

Greater detail of how Norfolk County Council s Communities Committee could provide services with potentially only 75% of its current budget emerge today as the Papers are published for next week s Committee meeting.1

Each Council committee has been asked to explore how services can change to meet growing demand with reduced funding.

On Wednesday 21st October, councillors on the Communities Committee will be asked to discuss a total of 26 budget options, which collectively would reduce the amount spent on services by around 15m.

As well considering specific proposals, the report also outlines the need for the Communities directorate to develop and implement a new more localised structure, as the directorate is organised on working arrangements that were in place before it was created at the end of 2014.

After £245 Million Savings, Norfolk Residents Are Urged To Take Part In ...

Cllr Paul Smyth

Chairman of the Communities Committee, Cllr Paul Smyth, said: Council officers have worked very hard to identify how we might find substantial savings at a time of unprecedented demand for public services. However, while the focus has been on exploring a 25% saving model we should not forget that a 16% saving across the Council would fill the current 111m funding gap .

As the era when cuts could largely be made through efficiencies is effectively over, we now have to make more priority-based decisions and be increasingly creative in how we spend money wisely and to best effect.

This process will be difficult, but it may produce positive developments such as a closer working relationship between the Council and local communities, voluntary organisations and other parts of the public sector in the delivery of some services.

Officers will continue to develop this proposed new service delivery model and, provided the Committee wishes to pursue this, will bring further information to the Committee to consider in due course.

I would urge people to take part in the public consultation on the council s savings proposals which will begin in a few weeks.

Each of Norfolk County Council s service committees was asked during September and October to explore how it might provide services with substantially reduced funding.

The Communities Committee is the last of the council s main service committees to discuss the new budget options. Policy and Resources Committee will then meet on October 26 to consider which of the options discussed by the service committees will be subject to consultation with the public this Autumn.

Since 2011, Norfolk County Council has made savings of 245 million from service budgets and frozen council tax five years in a row.

But continuing reductions in government grant and increasing demands for services mean the council is having to radically change its role and the way it delivers services.

Committees discussed initial ideas during September for how departments could help plug a predicted budget shortfall, with council officers asked to bring back more detailed proposals this month.

Whilst the predicted shortfall for the next three years is forecast to be 111m, the council is modelling its future services based on a larger shortfall figure of 169m.

This is so that councillors can have choices and options about how best to prioritise council spending.

Committees have therefore been asked to set out how they would deliver services with 75% of their addressable ( non-fixed ) budget.


  1. ^ current budget emerge today as the Papers are published for next week s Committee meeting. (norfolkcc.cmis.uk.com)

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