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Staggering £110m of reserves being held by the County Council!

June 6, 2012 10:06 AM

Despite continual pleas to consider the use of earmarked Reserves, a report to the next meeting of the County Council's Cabinet published by the Director of Resources shows that the Conservative Administration has now shamefully siphoned over £110m into the reserves whilst approving cuts to services and savings of £26.9m.

  • Since 2010 the actual balance of earmarked reserves has gone from £52.4m to a massive £110.7m, an increase of over 111% in two years!
  • The Councils own estimated figure for the reserves in February for this year was £87.5m.
  • The earmarked reserve now equals around 1/3 of the County Council's annual revenue budget for services

Simon Galton, Leader of the Liberal Democrats on the Council said, "We are not saying every penny of his money should be spent, indeed some of the reserves are sensible, but it beggars belief that the Conservatives think its acceptable to build up this mountain of cash while cutting funding to community groups, Police Community Support Officers, restricting elderly care and claiming they are being forced to cut home to school transport."

"The simple fact is the Council's reduction in its spending is creating a cash surplus, which means the Council has the opportunity to look for ways to use some of money to protect vital services and invest in the local economy to stimulate growth and jobs."

"No doubt the Cabinet Member for Resources, Nick Rushton will hide behind the auditor's recent praise for the Conservative policy of building up reserves, but I have never heard an auditor say reserves were too high. Liberal Democrats believe a thorough review of reserves should to be undertaken in the light of these figures and a better way of deciding what to do with the money, than simply squirreling it away in reserves, must be found."