Derby City Council

Council “slashes” £70m off its budget cuts claim.

The Council has been telling the public over the last few years about the massive cuts made to services as a result of reductions in the Government Grant.

During the 2016 election campaign, the local Labour Party were claiming

” Since the Tories came to power £116m has been slashed from services in Derby. They have now demanded a further £45m”

I highlighted this to the Council’s legal Officer and exposed this in the article “Labour’s Election Leaflet Lies over Budget Cuts”

A year later, in the 2017/18 Budget Consultation the extent of claimed savings had increased by £19m:

“The Council has implemented £135m of savings since 2010, when austerity measures began. The requirements over the next 3 years are approximately £28m. The Council will therefore have made savings of £163m by the end of this Medium Term Financial Plan (2020)”

Based on the previous maths (using 3 year plan), this would have increased for 2018/19 to £150m

Interestingly in the 2018/19 Budget Consultation, the assertion is now:

“Since 2010, the Government has cut the funding received by local authorities by almost 40 per cent. As a result, Derby City Council has had to make savings of £80 million in order to balance the books.”

A drop of £70m!….What happened to the savings? Or as the Legal Officer stated, at the time, it was a “political interpretation of figures”

By way of note:

In 2010/11 – the total revenue funding available to the Council ( exc schools) was £214.9m

In 2018/19 – the equivalent figure will be £215.8m.

The funding formula since 2010 has changed and so direct comparisons are not possible, however in 2010 Council Tax was £80m, now it’s £90m, the balance is received from the Government ( and since 2013 retained Business Rates).

How much it should have increased by due to inflation, extra burdens, etc, and how much this could have legitimately been reduced by due to better use of resources and being more efficient is only a matter of assumption – no records exist.

Comment

Cllr Baggy Shanker – Cabinet Member for Finance and Governance was asked to make a statement – thus far he has not responded.

The headline numbers used to make political statements in the past have been vastly over-stated and finally, now, the Council has come clean, and exposed that fact. The £80m is still an assumption and cannot be backed up by auditable numbers. There is no evidence that it is even this high!

1 reply »

  1. The only thing they are good at is lying through their teeth. They waste more money and haven’t had their books signed off on for last year and are late with this year’s. Makes me wonder who has had their fingers in the till. The books obviously don’t tally and they have to find who has been light fingered and helped themselves

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