County council passes £55m of cuts in budget

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Council tax is set to rise in Hampshire

Hampshire council tax is set to rise – but bosses say it is ‘no mean feat’

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Councillors from Hampshire County Council have this afternoon agreed its budget for the next year.

The budget proposed by the Conservative group contained £55m worth of spending cuts and included 1,172 job losses.

It also contained a controversial £6m cut to spending on Sure Start centres across the county despite emotional pleas within the council chamber from parents and young children.

A Lib Dem amendment to the budget proposed using the council’s cash reserves to ensure the cuts did not have to be made but the amendment was defeated.

Council leader Ken Thornber said: ‘I can not remember a worse day in 34 years of serving the people of Hampshire.

‘This is the most difficult budget I have ever seen and there were very agonising decisions to make.

‘Nobody comes into the council wanting to make cuts we stand to attempt to improve services.’