£30m of cuts announced by Manchester City Council

Manchester City Council has published its budget proposals for the next three years, outlining plans to make cuts of £30 million.

In the Autumn of 2016, the council was warned that they would have a budget shortfall of between £40 million and £75 million and the government’s financial settlement leaving the region £1.2 million worse off than anticipated.

The council has highlighted how continuing cuts since 2010/11 have seen directorate budgets reduced by almost a third and £271 million of savings and budget reductions made. Additionally, the authorities workforce has reduced by 38 per cent over the same period, from 10,444 to 6,452.

The budget proposals outline plans to reduce its budget gap by raising council tax by a total of 4.99 per cent - including the three per cent social care precept - in 2017/18 and 2018/19 and 1.99 per cent in 2019/20.

Moreover, adult services will provide efficiency savings of £12 million through the Locality Plan, while just short of £2.9 million of savings will be found through children’s services in 2017-20, with aims to safely reduce the number of children in care.

Sir Richard Leese, leader of Manchester City Council, said: “The last few years have been very challenging for the council as we have had to deal with continuing cuts at the same time as increasing pressures on services. This has been exacerbated by unfair government funding settlements which have hit big cities such as Manchester the hardest.

“But we remain determined to do all we can, working with Manchester people and other partners, to continue to protect the vulnerable and give everyone the opportunity to share in the success of the city’s growing economy. This budget process underlines this partnership approach as we attempt to strike the right balance which, inevitably, still involves some difficult decisions.”

Councillor John Flanagan, executive member for finance, added: “Getting to this point has been a long and careful process because we want to involve the public as much as possible at every step.

“Between July and September last year Manchester people told us their priorities, which helped officers come up with their initial options in October. The consultation feedback on those options has in turn shaped the proposals. Now, as a final stage, we are putting these proposals to the public for their views.

“Manchester people have played a valuable role in shaping the budget so far. We’re grateful to them for their time so far and would welcome further input on the proposed budget.”