Bath and North East Somerset Council agrees budget cuts

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Cuts to the coming year's budget in Bath and North East Somerset (Banes) have been agreed by the council.

More than 150 jobs out of 4,000 are expected to be lost in the next year.

The Conservative-run authority said the savings would allow for a council tax freeze in 2011/12. Banes said it had to make £2.6m of cuts to its services.

Funding is set to be reduced to youth services and some voluntary groups. The council wants to spend £33m on projects including new offices and a library.

The council said the £2.6m cuts were "equivalent to less than 1%" of its gross revenue budget of £351m.

'Target resources'

It also approved plans to spend £200m over five years in projects including £33m in Keynsham town centre.

The scheme would include the redevelopment of the council offices, retail units and a library.

The £200m investment proposals also included £10m towards a new leisure centre in Bath, £5.5m towards increasing the amount of affordable housing and £18.5m to improve school buildings.

Conservative councillor Malcolm Hanney said: "Efficiencies are being continually achieved, balanced budgets are being delivered, and we continue to plan for the future as the council reforms its structure and the way in which services are delivered.

"The council continues to target its resources so that greater investment can be made in the high quality front line public services rightly demanded by our residents."

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