Doncaster councillors praise local authority underspend against backdrop of 'savage and barbaric austerity cuts'
Councillors have praised a financial report which shows Doncaster Council underspent by 2.1 million in the last three months of the financial year.
Deputy mayor Glyn Jones said the savings were down to ‘continued close management’ of finances even after handing over £6 million to plug funding gaps in children’s services and overspending on adult social care.
A meeting heard the main bulk of the savings were found in the regeneration & environment and corporate sectors.
Cabinet members gave the council a pat on the back and lined up to praise officers who have control of the purse strings.
Coun Nigel Ball, cabinet member for public health, praised the financial performance against a backdrop of ‘savage and barbaric’ austerity measures.
But deputy mayor Jones added there was still a projected £13 million funding gap for 2020/2021 and councils including Doncaster still didn’t know from Government what they can spend past beyond that.
“The report shows the council is in a good position with a positive financial out turn which has been consistently good performance for 2018/2019,” deputy mayor Jones said.
“We acknowledge the challenges earlier in the year which we rose to an addressed, however there is still more to do with the delivery savings for 2019, 2020 and beyond.
“With the long anticipated Government spending review, the Green Paper on adult social care and Brexit, we do not know what funding we will have to spend which means it’s very difficult to form a budget.
Coun Ball added: “This is a very encouraging performance and we need to take note we are in the ninth year of savage and barbaric Tory austerity cuts on our local authority.
“Doncaster is the third worst hit council in Britain in terms of these cuts.
“What we’re faced with now is a council that’s performing well which has been quite innovative in the ways it is developing services set against a backdrop of a chaotic and anarchic government which exposes vulnerable people and makes our community pay off the bankers.”