Tuesday, August 9, 2022

Council to cut 50-60 jobs as it looks to save £12.1m

Next week, Derby City Council’s Cabinet will meet to discuss the development of the Council Plan and Mid Term Financial Strategy, including proposals to cut 50-60 job posts.

Cabinet members will review the progress of developing the Council Plan and Council’s Medium Term Financial Strategy (MTFS) for the 3-year period 2022/23 to 2024/25. The plan builds on the Council’s Recovery Plan, refocusing outcomes to ensure better partnership working for the city, improved working with residents and communities and Derby City Council’s ambitions for the future. To support this approach a new Council Vision is proposed of:

Ambitious for Derby – Working with the city, For the city

The Council’s priorities for the future will be focused around four partnership themes. The proposed partnership themes include:

  • Green Derby – Making a positive impact on our environment
  • Vibrant Derby – A reimagined City Centre with culture at its heart
  • Growth Derby – Creating a modern smart city with jobs and skills for the future
  • Resilient Derby – Working with communities to reduce poverty and inequalities

The themes have been co-produced and adopted by the city-wide Partnership Board, which will help support planning, co-operation and collaboration across the city in the future. In particular, the Council Plan sets out the shared ambitions of the city and refocuses investment and priorities to deliver against these.

Along with the new partnership themes, the Council has an ambitious transformation and improvement project called ‘Working Smarter’. This aims to deliver the modern, effective and value for money public services to ensure that the Council’s finances are manageable and sustainable over the medium to long term.

Cllr Mick Barker, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Governance, said: “As a city we’ve shown real resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic and none of this would have been possible without the work of our communities and partners.

“This new Council plan for the city is pragmatic in the current climate and brings partnership working to the heart of everything we do and gives us the chance become a stronger and more resilient city.

“We hope that together this new way of working will better support our communities, promote economic growth and to continue to navigate through the most unprecedented times.”

Alongside the Council Plan, Cabinet will be considering the 3-year Medium Term Financial Strategy that supports the delivery of services and priorities. This has been challenging as the Council is experiencing increased demand for services following the COVID-19 pandemic, alongside increased costs, and inflation within the economy. These combined total £13.4 million new pressures for the Council, which is only partly funded from an expected increase in Government funding next year.

Throughout this year the Council has been reviewing its services, costs and income to ensure resources are targeted. This has identified £12.1million of savings and efficiencies for next year – these will be consulted on at the end of December.

Current budget plans propose a reduction in 50-60 job posts, which will include removal of vacant posts, approval of a number of voluntary redundancy requests, as well as compulsory redundancies.

The Council is expecting its financial settlement from Government in mid – December which will allow the Cabinet on 21 December to issue a budget for consultation.

Cllr Jonathan Smale, Cabinet Member for Finance, Assets and Digital Services, said: “Against the backdrop of increasing demands following the pandemic and increasing costs within the Economy the Council has worked hard to plan for a balanced budget for next year and improved financial sustainability in the medium-term.

“The Budget proposals seek to deliver shared outcomes for and with the cIty supported by significant change programmes to improve the effectiveness of services and to work with communities and partners in developing new service models.

“We have looked across the Council for efficiencies and savings and despite the size of the financial challenge facing Councils have managed to minimise job losses and protect many services that resident value.

“Planning for the future to help balance budget is our priority and will help support the city to be more ambitious and inform our strategy for future years.”

A full public consultation will commence later in December, following the consideration of full budget proposals by Council Cabinet on 21 December.

The new proposed Council Plan 2022-25 will be issued for consultation alongside the MTFP at the end of December, and subject to the consultation will be adopted by Council at the end of February 2022.

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