Cut backs are result of perfect storm - city finance boss

Cut backs are result of perfect storm - city finance boss

Cut backs are result of perfect storm - city finance boss

First published in News

COUNCILS across the country are facing an unprecedented squeeze on their budgets as part of the Government’s austerity drive to cut the national deficit.

In October 2010, the Conservative/Liberal Democrat coalition announced it was cutting funding for local council budgets by 28 per cent over the next four years.

Southampton council finance boss councillor Simon Letts told the Daily Echo the unitary authority was facing a “perfect storm” that had put it in the “premier league” of councils hit by cuts.

The council spends around £500m a year including schools and benefits. The net annual budget once these are stripped out is around £190m.

Cllr Letts said Government funding was being slashed more than thought and costs were going up due to inflation and greater demands on council services while reserves were down to minimum a of £5m.

He said the council has taken “more than its fair share of austerity cuts”, had done all it could to reorganise and become leaner, and was now being “compelled” to make harsh cuts.

He said council finance officers were bracing themselves for a grant reduction of £9.2m next year compared to the £0.7m set out two years ago.

“This is a clear betrayal of this council and our city by the Tory led Government,” he said.

“I am aware that members of the previous administration continue to lobby Government on Southampton’s behalf and are in private at least standing up for Southampton. I publically thank them for this.”

Cllr Letts said the announcement of next year’s Government funding had been put back to December 24 which he called a “clear case of ‘a good day to bury bad news’.”

Comments (6)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

9:21am Mon 12 Nov 12

Sotonians_lets_pull_together says...

This is exactly what the Conservatives said would happen if Labour came in.

Why on earth do the unions put their faith in labour prospective councillors, when it should be obvious they are only saying what they want to hear to get elected?

Labour, as usual with unaffordable commitments, which end up costing real people jobs.

Staff would have been much better off with pay freezes and small reductions in order to protect more jobs. Surely after all, that is what a union is all about, everyone sticking up for each other.

It should not be about fighting any cuts at the cost of people's jobs.
This is exactly what the Conservatives said would happen if Labour came in. Why on earth do the unions put their faith in labour prospective councillors, when it should be obvious they are only saying what they want to hear to get elected? Labour, as usual with unaffordable commitments, which end up costing real people jobs. Staff would have been much better off with pay freezes and small reductions in order to protect more jobs. Surely after all, that is what a union is all about, everyone sticking up for each other. It should not be about fighting any cuts at the cost of people's jobs. Sotonians_lets_pull_together
  • Score: 0

9:22am Mon 12 Nov 12

Sotonians_lets_pull_together says...

Efforts to get rid of the conservative council through strikes and resisting cost savings have cost real people their jobs.

People always have to remember that political idealists are too often ready to "throw the workers under bus" to achieve their aims.... ever ready to sacrifice livelihoods of individuals to achieve their political aims.

...people need to remember that left wing ideologies, labour and the unions cost people jobs: ignoring reality helps noone.

It is a tragedy that a hard line minority were allowed to set the political agenda.

All the workers who do not support strikes need to stand up to the hard liners next time, and vote them down!
Efforts to get rid of the conservative council through strikes and resisting cost savings have cost real people their jobs. People always have to remember that political idealists are too often ready to "throw the workers under bus" to achieve their aims.... ever ready to sacrifice livelihoods of individuals to achieve their political aims. ...people need to remember that left wing ideologies, labour and the unions cost people jobs: ignoring reality helps noone. It is a tragedy that a hard line minority were allowed to set the political agenda. All the workers who do not support strikes need to stand up to the hard liners next time, and vote them down! Sotonians_lets_pull_together
  • Score: 0

10:06am Mon 12 Nov 12

aldermoorboy says...

Latest football result.
Labour 6 -0 Workers
Who do you think the ref was, well he wasn't a Tory.
Latest football result. Labour 6 -0 Workers Who do you think the ref was, well he wasn't a Tory. aldermoorboy
  • Score: 0

12:46pm Mon 12 Nov 12

loosehead says...

These cuts ion Government funding were no secret & the Labour Party knew exactly what it would be over the next two years yet still promised the earth to get elected.
Why then if they're breaking promises left right & centre did they restore the pay to the ones who took a 2% pay cut?
Why if the Unions knew what was to come did they hold a vote where the workforce were advised to accept a deal where they would get lower redundancy & pension pay?
Mike Tucker responded to a letter I wrote basically calling me a liar?
Well now who's right & who's wrong?
Mike Tucker did you lie to your members along with your Unite colleague?
VOTE TORY for a caring job saving council Vote Labour for high council tax less services & job cuts
These cuts ion Government funding were no secret & the Labour Party knew exactly what it would be over the next two years yet still promised the earth to get elected. Why then if they're breaking promises left right & centre did they restore the pay to the ones who took a 2% pay cut? Why if the Unions knew what was to come did they hold a vote where the workforce were advised to accept a deal where they would get lower redundancy & pension pay? Mike Tucker responded to a letter I wrote basically calling me a liar? Well now who's right & who's wrong? Mike Tucker did you lie to your members along with your Unite colleague? VOTE TORY for a caring job saving council Vote Labour for high council tax less services & job cuts loosehead
  • Score: 0

6:59pm Mon 12 Nov 12

IronLady2010 says...

“I am aware that members of the previous administration continue to lobby Government on Southampton’s behalf and are in private at least standing up for Southampton. I publically thank them for this.”

Fair play Cllr Letts. You see how well you can all work together when you want.

Now, how come it has taken so long to look at the books and realise you're up the creek without a paddle? Your boss seems to think it's all the previous Administrations fault, yet you guys have had at least 6 months to study the books, time to get a decent accountant in I guess?
“I am aware that members of the previous administration continue to lobby Government on Southampton’s behalf and are in private at least standing up for Southampton. I publically thank them for this.” Fair play Cllr Letts. You see how well you can all work together when you want. Now, how come it has taken so long to look at the books and realise you're up the creek without a paddle? Your boss seems to think it's all the previous Administrations fault, yet you guys have had at least 6 months to study the books, time to get a decent accountant in I guess? IronLady2010
  • Score: 0

9:21pm Mon 12 Nov 12

loosehead says...

IronLady2010 wrote:
“I am aware that members of the previous administration continue to lobby Government on Southampton’s behalf and are in private at least standing up for Southampton. I publically thank them for this.”

Fair play Cllr Letts. You see how well you can all work together when you want.

Now, how come it has taken so long to look at the books and realise you're up the creek without a paddle? Your boss seems to think it's all the previous Administrations fault, yet you guys have had at least 6 months to study the books, time to get a decent accountant in I guess?
Ironlady before the local elections Williams told this paper exactly what Labour are now doing so he had seen the books he knew the cut in Government funding yet he wanted power so he lied & now he has power just blame the Tory council & the government.
Did you see Letts & the Union guy Andy straker on BBC tonight?
Letts looked embarrassed to say the least at the lies he was spouting & Straker just followed the line it's the Governments fault.
Letts only remembers this governments cut in funding he conveniently forgets the £25million cut by the Labour Government to buy votes up North.
Sorry but it's time to say WE TOLD YOU SO. I've been called a liar by Mike Tucker & a few left wingers on the posts but who's lying now.
Why wasn't the vote on pay restoration & cut in redundancy pay & pensions not delayed until after this announcement?
Tuckers talking about a meeting to see if they want to strike again?
They've already given up their right to legal action & taken a cut in both redundancy pay & pensions so now you want them to strike to keep jobs that the Tories had secured with pay cuts?
I feel sorry for those Council workers lied to by both the Unions & the Labour Party & didn't the Unions canvas & leaflet & advise their members to vote Labour?
[quote][p][bold]IronLady2010[/bold] wrote: “I am aware that members of the previous administration continue to lobby Government on Southampton’s behalf and are in private at least standing up for Southampton. I publically thank them for this.” Fair play Cllr Letts. You see how well you can all work together when you want. Now, how come it has taken so long to look at the books and realise you're up the creek without a paddle? Your boss seems to think it's all the previous Administrations fault, yet you guys have had at least 6 months to study the books, time to get a decent accountant in I guess?[/p][/quote]Ironlady before the local elections Williams told this paper exactly what Labour are now doing so he had seen the books he knew the cut in Government funding yet he wanted power so he lied & now he has power just blame the Tory council & the government. Did you see Letts & the Union guy Andy straker on BBC tonight? Letts looked embarrassed to say the least at the lies he was spouting & Straker just followed the line it's the Governments fault. Letts only remembers this governments cut in funding he conveniently forgets the £25million cut by the Labour Government to buy votes up North. Sorry but it's time to say WE TOLD YOU SO. I've been called a liar by Mike Tucker & a few left wingers on the posts but who's lying now. Why wasn't the vote on pay restoration & cut in redundancy pay & pensions not delayed until after this announcement? Tuckers talking about a meeting to see if they want to strike again? They've already given up their right to legal action & taken a cut in both redundancy pay & pensions so now you want them to strike to keep jobs that the Tories had secured with pay cuts? I feel sorry for those Council workers lied to by both the Unions & the Labour Party & didn't the Unions canvas & leaflet & advise their members to vote Labour? loosehead
  • Score: 0

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree