Tyne & Wear

Gateshead £30m cuts package 'will hit everyone'

The leader of Gateshead Council has warned that £30m worth of cuts over the next two years will impact on "everyone somewhere" within the borough.

Councillor Mick Henry said the authority had faced "difficult choices" after his cabinet approved the plans.

Libraries could close, charges for services will increase and funding will be reduced for venues including The Sage and the Baltic.

Mr Henry said the spending reductions would have a "real noticeable impact".

"It's not possible to reduce the budget by such a large amount without it impacting on everyone somewhere," he said.

The council hopes charities, volunteers and community groups may step in to run some services.

Bill Quay Community Farm will close unless a new partner comes forward, while charges for pest control, allotments and some waste collection services will go up.

Council tax for 2013-14 will be frozen if the budget is approved on Thursday.

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