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Barnet Borough Council plans to make £72million savings in next five years

Times Series: Councillor Richard Cornelius Councillor Richard Cornelius

Barnet Borough Council has predicted it will have to make £72million of savings over the next five years.

The new "spending envelope" will be debated at the first meeting of the council's new policy and resources committee on June 10.

The authority's leader Councillor Richard Cornelius said:  "A likely saving of £70 million was first outlined last year and officers have been carrying out a review of all council spending over the past 12 months, developing options for how the council could meet the financial  challenge.

"These were discussed with the leaders of all parties.  The council has also carried out early consultation with residents about their priorities for the council and the borough over the next decade."

These options will be considered by the new cross-party committees, following the authority's decision to switch from a cabinet to a committee system of governance.

Cllr Cornelius continued: "I think it is important that we are able to face up to difficult decisions again if we are able to protect the quality of life in the borough and make sure our services are available to those who most need them. 

"The same meeting that discusses the budget envelope will also be discussing a new consultation strategy. It is important that all members, and all residents, are able to have their say about the challenges facing the borough."

The authority has said the savings are needed to meet growing demand for council services alongside a continued reduction in government funding.

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