Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Portsmouth City Council cuts put 130 jobs at risk

Up to 130 jobs are under threat in Portsmouth as the city council looks to save £17m over the next year.

A full council meeting approved the annual budget which may lead to posts being cut and services reduced.

The Lib Dem-controlled authority said the posts being cut are made up of part-time, vacant and job-share positions.

Saving measures include reducing street cleaning, public toilets and the number of children's centres.

A programme of £8m of cuts was agreed to go to public consultation before another meeting discusses a further £9m of savings in the new year.

'Tighten our belts'

Organisations such as the Salvation Army, Portsmouth Association for the Blind and U3A would lose funding.

The New Theatre Royal would lose £30,000 of funding.

Council leader Gerald Vernon-Jackson said: "These are difficult decisions which no-one likes.

"The level of debt the country is in means we all have to tighten our belts."

He said the job cuts would be made through redeployment and voluntary redundancies, but refused to rule out compulsory redundancies.

Ian Woodland, from union Unite, said union representatives would be meeting council bosses on Wednesday morning.

Although Mr Vernon-Jackson said this was a usual weekly meeting and neither he nor any director would be present.

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