Local council budgets slashed nearly a third


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Councils are being driven to financial disaster as they struggle with budget cuts of almost a third over five years, the Government is warned today.

Spending on housing, leisure services, libraries and roads are all being dramatically reduced, according to the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy.

In a new analysis, it shows that English councils’ per capita spending has been slashed by 14.5 per cent between 2009-10 and 2014-15. Adjusted for inflation, this represents a drop of 29.1 per cent.

Rob Whiteman, the institute’s chief executive, said: “The continued sharp downward trajectory of local authority spending in both cash and real terms shows the significant financial challenge councils have faced.

“Many councils have managed this reduction well and continue to live within their means, but we are now starting to see some local authorities face real and immediate financial pressures.

“We must recognise therefore that some councils have been hit harder than others and will need more support.”