Leader’s promise on £60m cuts plan for Northants County Council

Council leader Matt Golby
Council leader Matt Golby

The leader of Northamptonshire County Council has promised that councillors from all parties will have a chance to view and challenge the £60m savings plan before it is made public next month.

Cllr Matt Golby gave the assurance to councillors when they met at County Hall yesterday (Thursday) for the full council meeting after some raised concerns that they had not seen any detail.

The savings plan will seek to shave £60m off the council’s spending for the remainder of this financial year with fears about what services will suffer the biggest impact.

The two Government-appointed commissioners along with the new chief executive Theresa Grant and her team of senior officers have been devising the cuts programme, which is being called the ‘stabilisation plan’.

The finances of the council are in severe crisis and if they don’t make them the authority will fail to balance its books for a second year running.

Last financial year the council was £35m in the red after a number of its accounting practices were judged incorrect by auditors.

Cllr Golby said the cabinet members were challenging the commissioners on some of their work but that the authority had to work with them.

He said: “The stabilisation plan is being finalised and it is something that will go through scrutiny as soon as it is ready.

“We will be sharing it with cabinet and then it will also be sharing it with our own and opposition councillors.”

It is expected that the savings plan will be approved at the next NCC cabinet meeting on October 9, with the papers released five days before.