Chancellor announces cuts to local government funds

George Osborne
George Osborne

Chancellor George Osborne today outlined his plans for government spending for 2015/2016 which will see more cuts imposed on local council.

Speaking at the House of Commons Mr Osborne confirmed the local governemnt department will have to make savings of 10 per cent - although council tax will be frozen in 2014/2015 and 2015/2016.

However, it is unclear what this will mean for Calderdale residents who saw a 2.5 per cent rise earlier this year despite a similar promise of a freeze from the government.

At the time the Calderdale Council said the increase was needed to avoid larger hikes hitting homeowners further down the line.

The Museums Association says the cut to local government funding will impact negatively on services.

Director Mark Taylor said: “Predictably, local government is low down the food chain and we know that local government museums or independent museums supported by them are way down the local government food chain. The result can only be less museums, opening less and providing less services.”

Those out of work will have to wait seven days before they sign on for Jobseeker’s Allowance and claimants will now have to attend at the job centre every week as opposed to the current system of once a fortnight.

Claimants who do not speak english will also have to take lessons or face cuts in their benefits.

The chancellor’s speech outlined a total of £11.5 billion in savings.

The public sector took another hit as 144,000 jobs are set to go by 2015/2016 - although Mr Osborne said this was balanced by an increase in available jobs in the private sector.

He also announced an end to automatic pay progression in public sector jobs.

A gross figure of £50 billion of capital investment was announced with improvements planned in road and railway networks.

More local reaction in this Friday’s Courier.