£4m cuts to be made in city budget

ADULT social care and cultural trusts will face funding reductions as part of £4 million cuts to the city council's budget.

Wednesday, 13th December 2017, 6:00 am

Yesterday councillors voted for recommendations put forward by the council’s cabinet for the next financial year.

Plans will see a £277,300 reduction to the city’s culture, leisure and sport budget, £1,096,000 from the health and social care budget and £109,000 from housing.

But ahead a full council meeting yesterday, council leader Councillor Donna Jones said more than £4 million in profit had been raised every year through commercial properties.

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Speaking at the start of the meeting, she said: ‘Today, we will set out for you a budget that aims to protect vital public services for both the short and long term for the people of this great city.’

Councillor Hugh Mason, deputy leader for opposing Liberal Democrats, called for more money to be spent on cleaning the city’s shopping centres, having more wardens on the streets and ensuring all staff earn the Living Wage.

Speaking about government cuts, he added: ‘These cuts have inevitably resulted in reductions being made to our services, which none of us would have wished to make or even thought possible a decade ago.’

Portsmouth South MP, and Labour group leader Stephen Morgan said: ‘We must do more to create new jobs, support our schools so that every single young person has the equal chance of a good start in life, tackle the housing crisis, homelessness crisis we see on our city’s streets, and ensure care for our loved ones when they become frail.’

The council is required to slash £12m from its budgets by 2020/21.

The council carried out a public consultation asking people how important they thought it was to invest more in public services and major schemes.

The council cabinet’s recommended revenue budget was voted through by 23 votes to 14.

Since 2011 Portsmouth City Council has lost £73m of government funding.