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Bromley residents invited to have their say about how council spends budget
COUNCIL leader Stephen Carr is inviting everyone who lives or works in Bromley to have their say about how the borough’s budget should be spent.
To do this he is hosting a series of public meetings about the impact the next wave of cuts in government funding will have on the council and its services.
The meetings, where the council’s top councillors and senior officers will take questions and explain the financial situation, will be held across the borough this month and next (September and October).
In an open letter to the people of Bromley Councillor Carr said: "We want to talk with you about how we are managing the impact of these financial pressures while remaining committed to our vision of building a better Bromley and ensuring we deliver high standard, value for money services across the borough.
"We also want to talk about how such a reduced budget will mean a much smaller role for the council as we question everything we do and how we do it.
"Yes, we will continue to drive out efficiencies, to maximise our income, to argue strongly for a fairer government funding deal for our borough and to manage our budget robustly - the council has a reputation for managing our resources effectively, for strong financial planning and management.
"But faced with making more substantial budget savings at a time of increasing demands for services to support our elderly, our looked after children and those with special needs; at a time when the cost of waste disposal is rising, when interest rates remain low, and when we will lose out financially as our local schools become academies, there will be some very difficult decisions to make about whether we can still continue all our services as we direct resources to those in genuine need and as we fulfil our statutory responsibilities.
"Be assured we will continue to invest in the economic well-being of our borough, to protect our front-line services and our green and open spaces.
"But with a much reduced role, it is important to talk about how the council can support residents and the local community to be as strong and self-sufficient as possible - as individuals and together.
"To look at how we build on our borough’s proud tradition of volunteering, on initiatives such as the council’s friends’ groups, on the work of our voluntary organisations, local groups and other bodies.
"Because it is only as a strong community we can work together to support our vulnerable residents, ensure our children and young people have the future they deserve, minimise crime and antisocial behaviour to reduce the burden this places on our community.
"Only by working together and with our partners across the borough can we continue building a better Bromley and keep our borough the special place it is.
"Your views helped us make difficult choices in the last three years and as your elected councillors it is vital to talk with you as we shape the future of our council and set the budget for 2014-15.”
The meetings are as follows:
Evening meetings – 7 to 8.30pm
- September 26 - New Life Church, Main Road, Biggin Hill
- September 30 - Citygate Church, Rectory Road, Beckenham
- October 3 - Orpington Methodist Church, Sevenoaks Road, Orpington
- October 7 - Civic Centre, Stockwell Close, Bromley
Day time meeting – 11am to 12.30pm
- October 14 - Civic Centre, Stockwell Close, Bromley
All venues provide disabled access and a hearing loop.
Click here for more details.
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