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£47m service cuts get go-ahead from Staffordshire County Council

Staffordshire | News | Published:

Cuts totalling £47.4 million over the next year have been approved by Staffordshire County Council.

Drug and alcohol services, 'reablement' services for people who have been sick and Staffordshire Southwest Citizens Advice Bureau will all have their funding levels slashed.

Meanwhile the county's residents will be asked to pay 4.95 per cent more council tax from April – an increase of £53.89 for Band D homes.

The rise will plough an extra £19m into the council's coffers.

Ian Parry

The measures were voted through at a meeting of the full council yesterday.

Councillor Ian Parry, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Finance, said: "If we want to have an affordable council in the future it means we have to be smaller and smarter.

"That's the journey we are on and it means making some tough choices.

"So far we haven't flinched from doing so when necessary."

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The council's budget for 2017/18 totals £475.6m of which £312.8m will be funded through council tax.

Health and care accounts for £205.8m of the budget, with the council to pay out an extra £19.9m next year when it takes over the long-term care placement budget for older and disabled people from Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Partnership Trust.

The £3m cuts to drugs and alcohol services will see the axing of centres in Cannock and Stafford.

This will put recovering alcoholics at risk of relapse, according to a report discussed by the Healthy Staffordshire select committee.

Reablement services will lose out on £4.2m of council money and debt advice services provided by Staffordshire Southwest Citizens Advice Bureau will no longer be funded.

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