Wiltshire Councillor Jon Hubbard, leader of Wiltshire’s Liberal Democrats, has submitted an amendment to the council’s 2014/15 budget which could save the region’s youth services.
Wiltshire Council intends to cut £500,000 from its youth service budget and has come up with four proposals for saving money which could see all Wiltshire’s youth clubs axed and 140 staff lose their jobs.
Cllr Hubbard has put forward an amendment for £250,000 to remain in place for youth services.
If accepted, it would see around £100,000 saved on printing paperwork for councillors, an efficiency review of youth club premises aimed at saving £125,000 and £25,000 from councillors’ development fund being invested.
He said: “For me, youth services are vital and if they are delivered properly they will save the council money in the long term. I have discussed this with Jane Scott (Wiltshire Council leader and Wiltshire’s Conservative leader) and she has been very amenable.
“This is not political and it is not an attack on the administration. I just feel very strongly that these services need to be protected.”
The amendment will be discussed as part of the proposed 2014/15 budget during tomorrow’s full council meeting taking place at County Hall, in Trowbridge, at 10.30am.
Wiltshire Council plan to cut £25m from their 2014/15 budget.
They currently have a public consultation ongoing regarding the future of Wiltshire’s youth services with the four options being considered including retaining their current in-house service but at a reduced cost; outsourcing the service; encouraging and supporting staff to form a Public Service Mutual; or to developing a community led approach.
The results of the consultation are due to be considered by the council’s cabinet on April 22 but may be delayed.