St Albans District council introduces new structure under cutbacks

A NEW district council structure has been approved in a bid to meet spending reductions which will be confirmed this month.

The number of departments will be reduced from 10 to seven by amalgamating some of them and making better use of outsourcing and partnership arrangements with other organisations.

In October the government announced that there would be an average reduction in local authority grants of 26 per cent over four years as part of the comprehensive spending review.

The exact impact will not be known until this month when the council receives its specific grant but it accepts that to meet the savings required and minimise the impact on the services, some compulsory redundancies will be unavoidable.

All council staff have been offered voluntary redundancy following an initial review at senior officer level.

Next week’s meeting of the council’s cabinet should have the details of the exact reduction in grant but council leader, Robert Donald, confirmed that savings would need to be made.

But he added: “By outsourcing some back office functions and reorganising the council so that it becomes even more efficient, a sizeable proportion of the savings needed will be found.”