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Council reveals plans for first round of budget cuts, as second round gets underway

PUBLISHED: 15:30 08 November 2016

Gravesend High Street

Gravesend High Street

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Gravesham faces a £2.5million gap in funding

Plans to plug a funding gap worth more than £2million were unveiled last night.

Gravesham council’s cabinet members met to reveal the first round of changes to frontline services in the borough.

Areas such as tourism, town centre management, leisure facilities and events are all under threat of potential cuts.

Meanwhile, councillors kicked off the next round of budget cuts, as they look bridge a £2.5million gap in funding.

The gap will arrive when government support grants end in April 2019.

Amongst the ideas recommended by councillors was providing tourism, arts and heritage activities from the newly refurbished market, set to officially reopen in December.

Some council events, including the popular Riverside Festival could be scaled back.

“We have had to make some difficult choices, but we are trying our best to reduce the impact on our frontline services and ultimately the impact on our residents” commented council leader John Cubitt.

The Tory councillor continued: “There will inevitably be some changes to these services but we’re working out a way to deliver what we can, while we make the savings we have to make.

“The recommendations we have made have been challenging but, in relation to the first round of savings, we think we have made suggestions which still offer a very good level of service for residents.”

The first round of changes will now go to the overview and public scrutiny committee, which will meet on November 17.

The second tranche of savings concerns parking and amenities, revenues and benefits, and regulatory services (including community safety, dog wardens and environmental protection).

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