Lewisham Council targets cuts of another £10m

A Lewisham Council worker writes:

I thought you might like to know that all staff in Lewisham got an online notice yesterday that the cuts in Lewisham have now gone up by another £10 million. They will now be a staggering £95 million. To quote: "we must deliver £42m savings by April 2015. The scale of this challenge is unprecedented."

The biggest sources of potential savings so-far identified include "smarter assessment and deeper integration of social care and health," and sharing services with other Councils. Job losses at the borough's biggest employer are likely to follow.

20 comments:

Brockley Nick said...

yes

Joan Rivers said...

Fair few fat cats at Lewisham, will they start here?

http://www.lewisham.gov.uk/mayorandcouncil/aboutthecouncil/finances/Pages/Salaries.aspx

Tuna Melt said...

I noticed Lewisham were not mentioned as a borough who are freezing their council tax. We need more people in Lewisham that actually pay their council tax, these cuts would not happen and there would be funding to keep up the improvements and great work that is being done.

ianerc said...

Council tax has a very limited impact on Council revenue, It's the block grants from central government that provide the funding.

Tuna Melt said...

It certainly has some impact some boroughs are getting rebates and reductions, whilst Lewisham may have an increase to close the gap on those that do not pay.
Wel mentioned Joan Rivers, bigger numbers than the Private sector.
http://www.lewisham.gov.uk/mayorandcouncil/aboutthecouncil/finances/Pages/Salaries.aspx

PeoplesAssemblySEL said...

This is concerning. £10 million worth of *further* cuts by 2015 is a heavy heavy cut on area which has much *deprivation. We'd official like confirmation. Lewisham Council are not responding to questions this matter via their twitter account.

In terms of block grant funding this analysis in this article shows a disconcerting political bias. http://www.theguardian.com/society/2014/jan/30/local-government-cuts-poorest-areas

*Lewisham is 31st most deprived out of 326 local authorities http://www.lewishamjsna.org.uk/health-inequalities/index-of-multiple-deprivation

ianerc said...

Indeed, on average about 25% of LA income is from Council Tax. However, last time I looked only around 2% of Lewisham Council Tax was unpaid.

Brockley Nick said...

I've seen the comms to employees. The story is accurate.

Monkeyboy said...

Really? Someone running a private sector organisation with as much responsibility and as big a buget and workforce on less than £150k? Perhaps but very rare id say. Wonder how much the project directors of skanska who are looking after the lampost PFI are being paid?

Tuna Melt said...

Comparison to the Private scetor is more relative to the 'Head of' roles, the salaries you see will have at least an extra 25% cost on top in terms of the generous benefits; pensions etc It is relative to all councils not just Lewisham. Also very high daily rates that are paid out on a contarctual basis.
The government should re-distribute stamp duty generated in boroughs.

PeoplesAssemblySEL said...

You have, sure. But Lewisham Council need to make an official announcement on a severe cuts programme like this.

It's has lots repercussions...

Lewisham Council Press Office said...

The Council still needs time to work through the implications of this extra cut but we can confirm Lewisham Council's overall savings target for 2014-18 has risen to £95m following recent central Government announcements.

PeoplesAssemblySEL said...

Ok thank you. We would urge you to fight this as hard as you fought with campaigners over the downgrading of Lewisham Hospital's A&E & maternity services. A further £10 million cut to the services to the people of Lewisham is bleak news.

As a People's Assembly against austerity, made up or ordinary people, housewives, artists, business people as well as seasoned activists, our focus is to resist the 'cuts are inevitable' myths that infest politics at the moment.

Vicar's Knickers said...

Time we had real democracy, and a real choice on what our Council Tax is actually spent on, not just voting for one party or another.

Vicar's Knickers said...

Talking about Lewisham PFI's. Anyone any idea how much they are costing LBL?

terrencetrentderby said...

More difficult to avoid than a tax on property?
Window tax?
Tithes?

terrencetrentderby said...

I read somewhere Baron Bullocks still enforces prima nocta.
Anyone got married in Lewisham recently?

Vicar's Knickers said...

Don't think he would be too keen to enforce it judging by some of the ladies of Lewisham.

Vicar's Knickers said...

Obviously not judging by the arrears.

Peter Tooke said...

Whilst this will of course prove a challenge, a political leadership willing to innovate can achieve this level of savings without impacting directly on services to the most vulnerable. The simple truth is that all departments will need to look (again) at backroom costs and strip out management costs an sacrifice-able admin functions. Posts will have to be shed and all staff will have to work harder. That's just the reality of public service nowadays. Opportunities for combining services with other authorities will have to be explored (quickly, if not already underway). Lewisham is lagging behind others when it comes to savings, hamstrung by its old Labour philosophy and its tendency to blame the current Government rather than getting on with the (unexciting) business of administering quality local services. If only the people of Lewisham woke up to the mediocrity of their local politicians.

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