Responding to the report by the Public Accounts Committee into local government spending, Cllr Richard Watts, Chair of the Local Government Association’s Resources Board, said:
“With councils in England facing an overall funding gap of £8 billion by 2025, we are pleased the Committee has reinforced our warning that funding cuts and demand pressures are pushing local services to the brink.
“The Spending Review will therefore be make or break for vital local services and securing the financial sustainability of councils must be the top priority. If we truly value our local services then we have to be prepared to pay for them.
“We agree with the Committee that the financial sustainability of local government cannot be defined by the ability of councils to just provide statutory duties.
“Pressures continue to grow in children’s services, adult social care, and efforts to tackle homelessness and this is leaving increasingly less money for councils to fund other discretionary services, such as the maintenance of parks, certain bus services, cultural activities and council tax support for those in financial difficulty.
“Fully funding councils is the only way to ensure councils can continue to provide all of the valued local services which make such a positive difference to communities and people’s lives.”
- Between 2010 and 2020, councils will have lost almost 60p out of every £1 the Government had provided for services.
- Last week the LGA launched its campaign to influence the forthcoming Spending Review by warning about the growing risk to vital local services if the Government does not take action to secure the financial sustainability of councils.
Spending Review 2019
Without a sustainable funding, your council can't deliver the essential services that keep your communities running; securing the financial sustainability of local services must be the top priority for the Spending Review later this year.