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Bexley looking to find savings of at least £37m by 2018

PUBLISHED: 09:37 17 July 2015 | UPDATED: 17:21 20 July 2015

Bexley Council

Bexley Council

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New priorities for borough as it launches bid to improve life for residents as funding cuts bite ever deeper

Bexley council is expecting to have to find savings of at least £37m by 2018.

And in a bid to make the best use of the money it does have, the council says it is launching ‘a fresh approach to planning its budget’ at its cabinet meeting on Tuesday (July 21).

It says it will now be focusing on improving the lives and prospects of the borough’s residents and boosting value for money.

The council says it is reviewing every aspect of its work and spending based on three priorities, to ensure that people have the support and the opportunities they need to make the most of their lives:

• Growing more homes, jobs and new neighbourhoods

• Living long, fulfilling and independent lives

• Providing value for money

A budget report to the council’s cabinet sets out the scale of the financial challenge it faces, saying it expects to have to find at least another £37m of savings by 2018, on top of the £90m it has saved since 2007.

Council leader Teresa O’Neill OBE said: “People have shown their support at the ballot box for action on the country’s deficit. This means that the money the council receives from the government will continue to fall.

“We want to work in a positive way to make sure that this continues to be a great place to live and that the services that matter to our residents can continue.”

The council says it is using the new priorities to develop a series of proposals on which it will be consulting local people. The first stage of the consultation will begin following next week’s cabinet meeting.

Deputy leader Alex Sawyer added: “Our plans for the future are built around growth. We will be pressing for better transport links, working with others to build the new homes people need and to improve people’s education and skills, so that local people can benefit from new employment opportunities.

“We are working as hard as we can to make our money go further and to bring new investment into the borough.”

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