Significant changes ahead as Milton Keynes Council admits it must make major cuts to save £70million

Major cutbacks will see library services slashed, and parking charges and bus fares hiked, as Milton Keynes Council admits it faces “unprecedented challenges”.

This morning the council announced it must save £22million in order to deliver the 2015/2016 budget.

But that figure is just the tip of the iceberg as a total of £70million must be saved by 2020, the report states.

Pete Marland, leader of Milton Keynes Council, says “significant changes” must be made following funding cuts from the government.

He said: “We are facing unprecedented challenges in providing public services; we have less money and an increasing demand for essential services.

“This challenge will continue for at least the next five years.

“We need to protect those services which support our most vulnerable residents.

“Regrettably after already saving more than £68m since 2010 we can no longer to continue to provide services in the ways we have done. We have to make changes.”

> Key budget proposals include:

1) Savings of £4.1m over four years from Council support services through efficiencies and creating income from other public bodies.

2) Savings of £2.3m over 4 years through streamlining processes reducing duplication and changing the way customers access services.

3) A review of the way library services, children’s centres and youth provision are delivered through the Community and Cultural Services Review.

4) Responding to a request from local stakeholders to invest in better and more parking facilities, requiring parking charges to be raised.

5) Some revisions to bus subsidies and concessionary fares to be delivered with bus operators with the aim of savings £1.7m whilst minimising the impact on bus users wherever possible.

6) Investing £1.3m to support people with learning disabilities and £1.4m for older people and people with physical disabilities.

7) Investing £1.5m in protecting vulnerable children

8) Continuing to invest £50m in improving the borough’s transport network.

9) Plans to build 100 council homes to help residents that need a roof over their heads

10) Building eight new schools over the next five years and expanding many others, to ensure all children can access a school place

11) Building a residual waste treatment facility, to reduce the costs of disposing of waste and to reduce our environmental impact.

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