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Council set to slash workforce

Tuesday February 8th 2011

Around 1,000 jobs are set to be lost at Blackburn with Darwen Council as a result of the "speed and depth" of public spending cuts, its leader has announced.

As the council laid out plans to slash its budget by a quarter to save more than £25 million, it revealed jobs and services would go.

A number of staff have already left their jobs through early retirement or voluntary redundancy.

But the council expects a further 500 people to leave in the next few months through redundancy.

As well as the cuts to the number of staff, the council also revealed a number of services would be affected as part of the plans ahead of setting the final budget for 2011/12 next month.

Proposed measures include increased charges for burials and cremations, reductions in child welfare, closures of four bowling greens and 20 play areas, closures of three of five adult day care centres and potholes fixed on main roads only.

Labour leader of the council, Kate Hollern, said: "The speed and depth of these cuts mean we are forced to consider reducing, changing or in some cases stopping what council staff provide for the people of our two towns.

"We have lost £33m in total, because poorer areas are being asked to shoulder more for the burden of the cuts affecting local government.

"That's why nearby affluent, leafy areas are escaping these cuts and, in some instances, seeing budgets increase."

Copyright © Press Association 2011

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