Calderdale Council’s Labour Cabinet has published the first of its lists of services to cut and it doesn’t make for pleasant reading. Among the cuts are:
- Libraries – six community libraries face the chop
- Public Halls – three public halls will remain closed and the buildings sold unless the local community takes them on
- Household Waste Sites – closures and reduced opening hours are being considered
- Rubbish Collection – your bins might be emptied only every three weeks and all Landrover collections to rural properties stopped.
- Recycling – might be collected only every fortnight
- School Bus Fares – up by over £3 per week
Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group on the Council, Cllr James Baker, says: “Labour are taking an axe to many services that are valued by local residents and which improve the quality of life for people in Calderdale. And this is only the start – more cuts will be brought forward later in the year, and then there’s next year’s budget to consider.”
“If these proposals were included in the normal budget process, then the public would be consulted on them. As it stands, there are no plans to ask local residents what they think about these cuts. Furthermore, the paper containing these cuts has never been published on the Council's key decision list. This breaks the rules around executive procedures for the Local Authority and will make any decision at risk of a legal challenge."
“The financial situation facing the Council is indeed dire. This is mainly due to the actions the Council has taken in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, but that is not the only problem. Back in March, the Conservative government urged councils to do what was necessary to tackle coronavirus and promised to provide the necessary funding. That promise has not yet been kept, so we urge the government to match its words with actions that will allow this council – and all other councils – to keep on providing the local services that people value so highly.”