Job cuts aim to save £30m

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COUNTY council chiefs say their “difficult decisions” to cut jobs will help protect public safety and safeguard children.

On Monday, Lincolnshire County Council released the results of a job consultation relating to roughly half of its staff, which began in January, and show that about 477 jobs will be cut.

The council says it is having to axe employees as part of a drive to find £125 million in savings by 2015 – and believes job cuts will help them save up to £30 million a year.

This week’s job losses relate to a reduction in “full time equivalents” from 607 to 426, although the numbers are lower than first feared after changes to the Government grants it received and feedback from staff.

The total number of posts cut, once further consultations finish, is still expected to be about 1,000 – but the council says many of those will include posts already vacant and made up from people retiring and taking voluntary redundancy as well as compulsory redundancies.

Coun Kelly Smith, executive councillor for human resources and finance, said: “The council needs to save around £125 million over the next four years, and with this scale of reduction to our budget, we must reduce our spending accordingly.

“We have made the difficult decisions as to where to prioritise our funds, and public safety is a particular priority including safeguarding children, Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue, PCSOs, gritting roads and highways maintenance.

“Across the council, there are services that we believe are essential, others which although desirable, could be reduced, delivered in a different way, or stopped altogether.”