Ceredigion cabinet backs £9.6m savings plan

Ceredigion council's head office The authority aims to save £20m in the next three years

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Councillors in Ceredigion have agreed to continue with a plan to make savings of £9.6m in the next financial year.

Last month a council scrutiny committee voted to asking the cabinet to reconsider the proposed changes and cuts to services.

But on Tuesday the cabinet decided to go ahead with its plan.

It will be discussed by scrutiny committees on 30 January before the council decides its budget for 2014/15 in February.

The Corporate Resources Overview and Scrutiny Committee had raised concerns about the lack of transparency in the process and "the public engagement undertaken" to discuss the proposals when it met on 17 December.

Day centre

The original cabinet decision on 3 December to back the plan which aims to save £20.85m over three years was called in by Liberal Democrat councillors.

They claimed proposals had "insufficient detail" to make an informed decision on the impact of the cuts on Ceredigion's residents.

Proposals include closing libraries in Tregaron and New Quay, closing a day centre in Aberaeron, and a plan to save £2m by raising the pupil-teacher ratio from just under 16-to-one to 17-to-one.

Even if these proposed cuts are realised the council will still be over £1m short of its target for savings in the next financial year.

The Welsh government's draft budget in October revealed local government funding would be cut by 5.81% across Wales with Ceredigion's budget being cut by 4.6%.

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