North West Leicestershire District Council to save £1.5m

North West Leicestershire District Council is proposing to cut about 23 jobs and alter some of its services in a bid to save £1.5m in three years.

The Conservative-controlled authority said it hoped to make more than half of the savings in the first year from car parks, leisure and waste services.

The council's Labour group leader Leon Spence said people and services were already suffering.

The consultation ends on 11 November and a vote will be held in February.

In Coalville, Picnic in the Park could be discontinued, funds towards Christmas events could be reduced and the market may be relocated.

'Creek under pressure'

Councillor Nick Rushton, the cabinet lead for corporate resources, said: "We've got a 30% reduction in grants, we've got inflation running 5% plus a year and we've also frozen council tax.

"I've got nowhere else to go for money and I can't run a deficit budget, so we've put these proposals forward.

"When we're trying to save £1.5m, unfortunately some people may lose their jobs. In three years we're looking at about 23.5 posts and some are already vacant," he added.

He said he would consider alternative ideas from people on how to save £1.5m between April 2012 and March 2015 from its annual spend of about £11m.

Mr Spence said: "Services are starting to creek under pressure now and at the same time our taxpayers are paying the same amount for their council tax, they're seeing inflation and VAT go up and they're finding it difficult to live."

He added he did agree with some of the proposals.

Other proposals among the cuts include closing the creche at Hood Park Leisure Centre in Ashby-de-la-Zouch.

Mothers, who use the facility, said they had gathered 1,500 signatures opposing the closure.

One of the mothers, Julie Whiteside, from Ibstock, said: "We're not going to give up without a fight.

"Many of us have proposed that we would put in our free time to help and think of ways to market the creche to make it commercially viable."

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