Councillors should be cut by half

PUBLISHED: 17:00 28 July 2011 | UPDATED: 11:44 29 July 2011

Archant

THE number of councillors on North Somerset Council should be slashed to help the authority deal with spending cuts.

That is the view of one current councillor, who says the council needs to scale back its operations across the board and not ring fence certain departments for protection.

The authority has to cut £47.3million in the next four years, and Liberal Democrat Councillor Mark Canniford said: “These cuts are going to be severe, and we need to start thinking differently about how we approach them.

“I think we should cut the number of councillors, perhaps even down to around 30, as there are too many to cover the geographical area, who are claiming money which could be saved.

“2013 is the first opportunity we would have to cut its size, but councillors in both North Somerset and Weston Town Council should be putting suggestions forward about it as there are too many people in it who don’t do anything to represent their wards.”

On where the cuts should fall, Cllr Canniford added: “Certain departments shouldn’t be protected from these cuts while others have their budgets reduced.

“Departments like social services and children’s services are to an extent protected, but someone uses all of these services, and it seems unfair that some will see their budgets cut more, when others will be largely immune to that.”

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