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“Tough choices” for council as it plans savings of more than £50m

PUBLISHED: 12:05 20 January 2016 | UPDATED: 12:05 20 January 2016

Bexley Council will have to make more than £50million worth of savings in the next four years

Bexley Council will have to make more than £50million worth of savings in the next four years

(C) 2005 Hemera Technologies

The Cabinet will discuss financial plans next week

The leader of Bexley Council has admitted the borough faces “tough choices” as it is forced to make more than £50million worth of savings.

A financial settlement given by the Government has left the council scrambling to make savings of £56m by 2020, despite saving £63m since 2011.

Bexley Council would be allowed to raise council tax by up to 2 per cent in the borough with a referendum, following announcements from the government.

But a 4 per cent rise would only cover the cost of implementing the new National Living Wage, and none of the other costs the council faces.

Leader of the council Teresa O’Neill said: “We have realistic plans in place and are making good progress against our savings targets, but we will have to make more very tough choices.

“We are working with local people, businesses and other organisations to ensure we are as effective as we can be and to focus on what matters most.”

The budget and council tax rate will be set at the beginning of March, with a meeting of the council’s cabinet set for next week.

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