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22 November 2013, 15:39
Norfolk County Council have published a list of cuts they want to make to save them millions.
It includes a plan to charge people to take things to the tip, to do less maintenance on the roads and to cut the subsidy for buses along the coast.
Over the next 3 years Norfolk County Council need to save £189 million.
Some of the ideas they are considering are:
• Cutting £1m from road maintenance for one year, including fewer grit bin refills, cutbacks in road marking and safety barrier replacement (except where damaged), and reduced bridge and traffic light maintenance.
• Reducing the Coasthopper bus service subsidy by £75,000 (£150,000 over two years).
• Charging £2 per visit at nine recycling centres (others would remain free), stopping routine liquid paint disposal and charging for tyres.
• Making five recycling centres (Ashill, Heacham, Morningthorpe, Strumpshaw and Worstead) part-time from April 2015.
• Scaling back on Trading Standards consumer advice, support for schemes such as Trusted Trader, and product and service checks.
• Cutting the cost of school transport by encouraging use of alternative modes of transport.
• Charging for various advice and inspection activities currently provided free.
• Scaling back mineral and waste planning enforcement and reduced consultation costs on planning applications.
Councillor David Harrison told Heart: “This is the opportunity for the Overview and Scrutiny Panel to examine the savings proposals and their views will be very important in helping to frame the Council’s final budget, alongside comments coming in from the public and outside organisations. The Council has to balance its budget, and there are no easy decisions. The Council is having to invest more in Children’s services, so that increases the pressure on Environment, Transport & Development.
“I think we can take £1m from the road maintenance budget for one year without serious long-term implications, but it’s not something I would want to see repeated. The proposals for recycling centres are aimed at reducing costs so that we can keep a county-wide service running. Similarly, we are proposing to reduce support for the Coasthopper so we can maintain support for other rural bus services.
"I don’t expect these proposals to be popular, but sadly they are necessary. Having said that, I would be delighted if the Panel debate or our consultation brought forward other, easier options, which is why I would encourage everyone to take part before it closes on Thursday 12 December 2013.”