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Bexley Council wants residents to have a say on next year’s budget

PUBLISHED: 07:00 21 November 2019

Residents are being a chance to have their say on Bexley Council’s next budget.

They have until January 6 to make their opinions known on the proposed budget for the 2020/21 financial year.

The draft proposals on which people are being asked to comment include -

* Making the best use of the council's assets, including land and buildings;

* Re-procuring and re-negotiating contracts which are due to expire, or be extended;

* Considering action to influence and reduce demand for services;

* Exploiting opportunities for digital transformation;

* Maximising the potential for generating income and taking a commercial approach where appropriate;

* Looking at where investment now can save money in the longer term;

* Looking for opportunities to support residents to do more for themselves;

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* Ensuring the council is as efficient as possible and is practising robust "housekeeping".

People are also invited to comment on the council's schedule of proposed fees and charges for 2020/21, its investment programme and to suggest ways they think the council could save money.

One possibly controversial cut is a reduction in residential and nursing block contract where there are planned savings of around £400,000.

The report says: "The current volume of residential and nursing home block contract provision has, overtime exceeded demand, primarily because of the success in supporting people to remain at home."

Plus there are plans to reduce carers where someone uses two carers "by introducing a change of equipment, a review of moving and handling techniques or further reablement input could safely reduce the required care to one carer".

This affects 63 people with two carers with 26 identified as candidates for savings.

The report says: "Twenty-six individuals reduced to single carer at a saving per person of £8.7k = £226k - Less £34k in equipment (already provided for) - Net saving £192k."

Feedback will be considered at a meeting on January 27.

It will meet again on February 25 to recommend a final budget and council tax to the full council meeting on March 4.

Complete an online survey at www.bexley.gov.uk/budget2020, or pop along to Bexley libraries for paper versions.


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