Glasgow & West Scotland

East Renfrewshire Council to cut 200 posts to save £20m

East Renfrewshire Council is to cut 200 posts over the next three years to help bridge a budget shortfall of £20m.

The council said it had begun talks with unions and would aim to manage the reduction through natural turnover, voluntary redundancy and redeployments.

East Renfrewshire said it had already identified about £10.3m (58%) of the savings required without impacting on frontline services.

A five-week public consultation on the proposed savings began on Monday.

'Heavy heart'

Council leader Jim Fletcher said: "The proposals we are presenting today do not make easy reading and it is with a very heavy heart that my colleagues and I must bring this savings package forward for review.

"We have left no stone unturned in trying to identify where we can make savings with the minimal impact on local people."

Councillor Fletcher said the authority's "priority" had been to make savings "by changing how we work internally before any service reviews are considered".

He added: "The focus has always been on maintaining quality services, particularly to our most vulnerable residents, whilst protecting local jobs.

"Despite our best efforts, a reduction in staff numbers and the services we provide is likely to be unavoidable."

Website feedback

East Renfrewshire said a copy of its budget savings proposals, which amounted, so far, to £17.6m, would be published in the council magazine on Monday.

A website has also been set up to allow local people to register feedback on the plans. This will open from 10 November until 5 December.

The council will make a final decision on the savings proposals in February 2015.

East Renfrewshire Council's budget for 2014/15 is £234m. The authority said £116.2 of this related to employment costs.

The council has already made £32m of annual savings since 2011.

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