Programme of swingeing cuts for Hampshire moves a step forward as government cash reductions start to bite
PLANS which could further hit services in Hampshire – including library closures and street lights being switched off for longer – and put more than 270 jobs at risk are set to be approved to help county councillors save millions of pounds.
Council tax is expected to go up by four per cent, some libraries across the county would be at risk of closure, residents could have to pay for services which are currently free and a number of health services could be reduced as Hampshire County Council is trying to save £80m by 2021. The controversial plans, which county council leader Keith Mans described as the council’s ‘greatest financial challenge to date’, are now set to be approved by the full council at a meeting in Winchester on Thursday. The details of the proposals are yet to be revealed and will be subject to further approvals and public consultations. But according to official documents, the department of health and adult social care is the one set to be hit the most with 120 jobs at risk as part of a move that would save £43.1m. County bosses had previously said that the saving target ‘will challenge the department like never before, and it is inevitable that there will be impacts on front-line services’.
The moves would affect people living in Fareham, Gosport and Havant, but not those in the Portsmouth City Council area.
Maria Zaccaro, Local Democracy Reporting Service