Residents should clean road signs to help Northamptonshire County Council save tens of millions of pounds, a member of the authority has claimed.
About 600 people are set to lose their jobs at the council as part of plans to save £68m in 2011 following a cut in government funding.
Heather Smith, responsible for transport and highways, was speaking on BBC radio.
She said residents should go out with a bucket and sponge.
"Is it too much to ask for somebody to go out with a bucket and a sponge in their hands and clean that sign?," she said.
More job cuts
The Conservative council's budget plans call for closure of eight libraries and cuts in funding for school crossing patrols.
It said it aimed to save a total of £136m over the next four years - which means more job cuts are likely.
The Liberal Democrat opposition said £15m of cuts were not identified and figures were needed before consultation started.
Local people are soon to be consulted for their views on the budget.
A final decision on the budget, which includes a freeze in council tax, will be made at a full meeting of the council in February next year.