Somerset

Council services in North Somerset 'likely to be cut'

Some services provided by North Somerset Council could be stopped due to a reduction in government funding.

Council leader Nigel Ashton said the authority needed to save or generate extra income of £100m on its revenue budget up to 2018.

Some services "will face reductions, possible cessation or closure, or be subject to charges", he said.

Mr Ashton added it was the "most severe financial challenge the council has ever faced".

The council's executive was told of the financial situation at a meeting on Tuesday.

Mr Ashton said the council would receive "significantly less" government funding in the coming years while having to meet the needs of a growing elderly population.

"As a consequence the council will need to identify and deliver savings or generate additional income of £100 million on its revenue budget over the period 2011-2018, in contrast to the original £47.3m that was identified as being required between 2011 and 2015.

"At the same time, continuing government support for capital investment in assets such as schools and highways will also be significantly reduced," he added.

The authority's leader said all services and all budgets would need to be "fundamentally reviewed to ensure all opportunities are recognised and delivered".

"This alone will probably not be enough," he added.

The council's budget for 2014-15 and its Medium Term Financial Plan (MTFP), are due to be approved next February.

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