Tell us what you think about local services as Suffolk County Council looks to save £25 million in 2019/2020

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Suffolk County Council’s annual budget consultation has launched as it looks towards setting its budget for the coming financial year.

toughcalltomakebudget2019Suffolk County Council’s annual budget consultation has launched as it looks towards setting its budget for the coming financial year. Please give your views on the services provided by the council as it faces the challenge of making savings of £25 million in 2019/2020.

Like all local authorities, Suffolk County Council faces significant financial challenges in the delivery of essential frontline services to support the lives of the most vulnerable young people and older residents across the county.

As part of its careful financial planning and management in recent years, the council has saved £260million since 2011 and has innovated to establish new ways to engage with communities and deliver services in the digital age but there are still tough calls ahead and we want to hear your views on which services are most important to you.

A proposed budget will be presented at the Cabinet meeting on Tuesday 29 January 2019 and the final budget will be discussed at Full Council on Thursday 14 February 2019.

The survey has already been completed by over 150 residents in its first two days. By visiting the consultation page on the council’s website at www.suffolk.gov.uk/budget2019 you can access the short survey and learn more about how much is spent on particular services.

You can also watch an introductory video from Councillor Richard Smith and use an interactive tool to navigate around the council’s website to focus on services that are of interest to you before you complete the survey.

Councillor Richard Smith, Suffolk County Council’s Cabinet Member for Finance and Assets said:

“As we begin our annual budget consultation I encourage you all to take part by visiting our website to complete our short survey. Your help will support the council’s budget-making process and alongside the views you give, we will listen to councillor colleagues and council officers as well as partner organisations across the public sector with whom we work closely to deliver services to Suffolk’s residents.

“We need to save around £25million in 2019/2020 as we face continued reductions in central government grants and from other income sources too. In setting the budget, we have to take into account our statutory obligations, as well as the service areas that people value most, including spending on roads. There is no easy solution. We have tough calls to make, and I welcome your views about how we should go about making our decisions.

“I am proud of our strong record which has allowed us to protect many services from large-scale reductions. However, as we continue to experience significant demands, there is pressure to reduce costs where possible to ensure we can balance budgets this year and in years to come.

“The consultation is open now and closes at 5pm on Friday 16th November 2018. Please have your say.”

Visit www.suffolk.gov.uk/budget2019 to learn more about the budget setting process and to take part in the short survey to give your views.

Details are also available on Suffolk County Council’s Facebook page and on its Twitter account @suffolkcc.