Vote on Peterborough City Council budget proposals delayed due to General Election

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A vote on Peterborough City Council’s budget proposals have been delayed due to the General Election.

The cash-strapped council has a £33 million deficit to bridge before April, with measures announced last month expected to wipe out £24 million of that amount.

The Council Chamber at the Town Hall

The Council Chamber at the Town Hall

However, ahead of the election on December 12 the council has entered purdah - the pre-election period which restricts its activity.

As a result, scrutiny of the budget by members of the council’s scrutiny committees has been moved from November 27 to December 18, while Full Council will now meet on January 15 to vote on the proposals.

The meeting was originally due to be held on December 18.

Should the budget measures be passed, a second set of proposals to wipe out the remaining £9 million deficit will be released on January 24, with councillors voting on March 4 to decide whether to back the money-saving plans.

The phase one proposals include making up to 75 redundancies, with potentially a similar number being made to council staff contracted to partners Serco, and a four per cent rise in council tax.

Moreover, the council plans to make large cuts to charities supporting the disabled, elderly and adults in poverty, as well as cuts to care support, youth funding, the end of a £50,000 winter heating grant for the most vulnerable, the loss of a support service for the isolated and the removal of hearing screenings for children starting school.

The council said a loss of government funding means it has to focus on its statutory duties, but that it would support groups to find alternative funding and that the community would be ‘empowered’ to take on the running of the services.

Planned council meetings which are not considered politically sensitive can go ahead as usual during the purdah period.

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