Portsmouth councillors approve budget cuts of £9m

Gerald Vernon-Jackson Portsmouth City Council leader Gerald Vernon-Jackson believes vital services will be protected

Related Stories

Spending cuts of an extra £9m will ensure the most vulnerable people in Portsmouth still get the help they need, according to the city council's leader.

Gerald Vernon-Jackson said the extra savings, which come on top of £8m worth of cuts agreed in December, had been "very difficult".

The budget will see the city's council tax precept rise 1.95% following three years of freezes.

A total of 130 posts are to be axed.

'Very difficult'

Mr Vernon-Jackson said: "We are investing to make sure there are jobs in the city, there is wealth in the city, that kids get a good education and we are putting money into the most vulnerable families in the city.

Under the approved plans six of the city's adventure playgrounds are to transfer to the voluntary sector, saving about £100,000.

Children's centres are to be merged, reducing the total from 16 to nine.

But an extra £1.6m is to be ploughed into social care for children and adults.

Schools are to receive a £6.8m boost which will be invested in school buildings to provide additional 1000 school places.

More than 300 places will be created by a brand new scheme to build a new primary school at Mayfield Secondary school site in the city.

There is also an increase in funding for eligible families to apply for 15 hours of free childcare for two-year olds and the number of health visitors in the city will double.

However Labour councillors told of their "'disappointment" that their amendments, which included demolishing leisure complex The Pyramids in Southsea, did not go through.

John Ferrett, Labour group leader, said: "We put forward an amendment which would cancel some of the capital programme and demolish The Pyramids .

"Whilst that would have cost just over £1m, it would have freed up £700,000 on an ongoing basis.

"It would have enabled us to keep open four or five of the children's centres that are under threat."

Meanwhile Isle of Wight Council is seeking to reduce its spending by £7m.

Its council's cabinet earlier supported measures including freezing council tax for a third consecutive year.

An £8.7m investment in adult social care is proposed over the next three years, while plans to spend £475,000 on improving child safeguarding and services for vulnerable children were also backed.

Council leader David Pugh said: "It's very helpful to have a clear decision on the proposals that will deliver a balanced budget this year."

Proposals are to be discussed at a full council meeting on 27 February.

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

BBC Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Weather

Southampton

Min. Night 16 °C

Features

  • RihannaCloud caution

    After celebrity leaks, what can you do to safeguard your photos?


  • Cesc FabregasFair price?

    Have some football clubs overpaid for their new players?


  • Woman and hairdryerBlow back

    Would banning high-power appliances actually save energy?


  • Rack of lambFavourite feast

    Is the UK unusually fond of lamb and potatoes?


  • Members of staff at James Stevenson Flags hold a Union Jack and Saltire flag UK minus Scotland

    Does the rest of the UK care if the Scots become independent?


BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.