Labour Councillor Andy Beere, in a report to Banbury Labour Party following a meeting of Cherwell District Council’s Budget Planning Committee on 9th July, expressed fears that the impact of cuts on ordinary people in Banbury will be, in his words, “very, very bad.”
The Committee met to consider George Osborne’s Comprehensive Spending Review, and confirmed the effects on Cherwell will be as predicted; over 4 years Government grant will fall from £7m to £4m – a loss of £700,000 every year.
In addition to the cuts, the costs of implementing welfare reforms are beginning to hit Cherwell:
Money to help councils administer housing benefit to be cut
There are fears that when Universal Credit is introduced many will have difficulty applying on line. Help for claimants will be needed at various locations, such as council centres and libraries
50 families across the District are affected by the £500 p/w benefit cap
900 families are affected by the Bedroom Tax
Cherwell’s Discretionary Housing Budget (extra financial help to families in need) has been used much more than the same period last year and Andy has asked that if necessary Council reserves should be used to ensure continued availability