Shropshire Council agrees to cut £5m from services

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Shropshire Council has agreed proposals which it says will save £5m, as part of continuing budget cuts.

The plans will mean reduced opening times for local authority museums, leisure centres, and day centres.

Keith Barrow, leader of the council, said: "We have to save a massive amount of money - and we have to act quickly."

The Conservative-run council has said it needs to save £76m over the next four years. However opposition councillors criticised the measures.

Councillor Barrow said he felt the moves were inevitable, and that there were more cuts to come.

He said: "We have to save £19m in the next financial year alone, and these proposals bring the total savings identified to date to £11.4m, so we still have some way to go."

Liberal Democrat councillor Roger Evans said the cuts were short-sighted, citing especially the removal of park and ride concessions.

Parking charge increase

The cuts, the first to affect services, will come into force between now and 1 April, 2011.

The council announced changes in pay and conditions for its staff on Wednesday.

Day centres that will close on weekends and bank holidays include, The Meres in Ellesmere and Helena Lane in Ludlow.

Reductions will be seen in budgets for dog warden services and there will also be increases in car parking charges.

The proposals were originally discussed by the council's cabinet in September.

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