Cuts are never welcomed by the general public and can become a PR disaster. In a refreshing change, one County Council in North Wales is opening the floor for feedback after it announced that it would have to make exhaustive budget cuts.
Flintshire County Council have announced that they will have to make room for £18m in the budget and as part of Flintshire’s Big Budget Conservation project, they will look for input from residents on where changes should be made.
Aaron Shotton of the authority will be taking par in a live Twitter debate on the 1st of September to field questions and take opinions on-board. This is part of a five-pronged consultation process which will see all public services, such as education, leisure, libraries and waste collection, come under scrutiny and re-evaluated.
The end result could see the introduction of paid services or them being scrapped altogether. Along with the Twitter session, the preservation project will include an online survey available September 12th, public meetings around the county and forms available be to filled out and returned to the council.
Like all other Welsh councils, Flintshire faces the task of filling a “black hole” in the budget after 4.5% reductions were quoted as early as June this year. Speaking at the time, Local Government Minister Lesley Griffiths told councils to be ready for cuts of between 1.5% and 4.5%.
A Welsh government spokeswoman also said: “While making forecasts of the fiscal position of the UK government is exceptionally challenging, it is clear that the scale of reductions Wales has faced since 2010-11 will continue in the next spending review period.
“Over the past three years, we protected local authorities in Wales from the cuts experienced by many other public services. In doing so, we made it clear authorities needed to prepare for the challenges to come.”
What do you think to Flintshire’s project? Worthwhile endeavour or otherwise? Leave a comment below, we want to hear from you!