Lancashire

Ribble Valley council 'will not cut jobs or services'

Ribble Valley Borough Council offices
Image caption The council said it had been preparing for the cuts to government grants for some time

A Lancashire council has said it will maintain jobs and services and freeze council tax - despite a 14.5% reduction in government grants.

Conservative-led Ribble Valley Borough Council said support for voluntary groups and charities would continue.

Council leader Councillor Michael Ranson said the authority had been preparing for the grant cuts.

Other councils in North West England have said they would have to shed hundreds of jobs to make savings.

'Tough times'

Mr Ranson said: "Like all other local authorities, Ribble Valley Borough Council has seen a large reduction in financial support from the government, but this reduction was inevitable and we have been preparing for it for some time.

"We have therefore been able to recommend a budget to full council that proposes a council tax freeze, with no reductions in services to residents and no compulsory redundancies, while maintaining our support for charitable and voluntary organisations.

"This is down to strong financial discipline, prudent management and a committed and dedicated workforce.

"The council has never relied on government handouts to fund services and we know times ahead will be tough, but this budget continues the work started earlier this year to transform the way the council delivers services to Ribble Valley residents."

The 2011/12 budget means the authority's share of council tax will remain at £140.69 for band D, which it claims is the lowest in Lancashire.

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