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Lib Dems voice job cuts concern
9:26am Thursday 14th February 2013 in News
The Liberal Democrats have voiced their concerns about Cheshire East Council’s (CEC) plans to cut 1,000 jobs in the next three years.
CEC announced last week that it would be reducing roughly a fifth of its 5,500 workforce.
The authority said it needs to reduce its £140 wage bill because of a reduction in the amount they receive from the Government.
The authority has outlined proposals to transfer staff to ‘arms-length companies owned by the council’, as well as outsourcing some services to the voluntary and private sectors.
This week, leader of the Liberal Democrats, Clr Road Fletcher, said he was worried about tax payers ‘not getting value for money’ if the services are outsourced.
The Alsager ward clr said: “It is unclear how many of the 1,000 posts to be removed from Cheshire East Council will be actual reductions and how many will be transferred to arms length companies and or tuped to other firms when services are privatised, which is what happened with the highways contract.”
“It is important that council taxpayers receive value for money and there is concern that this has not happened with the highways contract.”
Trade union, Unison, said it was ‘greatly concerned that the proposals will lead to the wholesale outsourcing of jobs and services to the private sector.’ Cheshire East Council contend that the cuts will save the authority money and present better value for money.
A CEC spokesman said: “A large part of our spending is on staff wages and salaries and these must be reduced to meet the more limited funding available to us in the future.
“To do this, we need to change the way we work, so that we can do more to improve the quality of life of our local residents with fewer people than we employed in the past.”