Cuts to housing support services to be discussed by Derbyshire County Council

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Proposed cuts to housing-related support services which help vulnerable people to live independently in their own home will be considered by Derbyshire County Council next week.

But, some of the cuts being proposed could be delayed by up to 18 months if extra funding is agreed by the council’s dabinet at its meeting on 15 July.

At the meeting the council’s dabinet will consider the proposals and a recommendation to allocate extra funding from its Public Health Resource Fund and business rates to extend the running of some housing-related support services, which were proposed to end this year or in 2015.

In January the county council announced a number of proposals which would change or reduce its adult care services as part of an overall plan to meet £157 million of budget cuts by 2018.

The proposals included reducing the housing-related support budget by £9 million in two phases over two years.

The proposals were subject to a 12-week countywide consultation.

Coun Clare Neill, Derbyshire County Council Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care said: “Since we announced the proposals to cut housing-related support services in January we have been working extremely hard with organisations that provide these services, discussing various options and asking them to find different ways of doing things that could help prolong their services.

“At the same time I have been trying to secure additional funding to try to mitigate the impact of the cuts, or delay them. The additional funding from public health and the business rates would help to lessen the impact, in one case by up to 18 months.

“We are making every effort to reduce spending across the council, including cutting senior management costs and selling off land and buildings.

“However, the size of the cuts being forced on this council unfortunately means it is inevitable that they will have a severe impact on some frontline services that people rely on. Many services will change and some will have to stop all together.”

“While we know there is opposition to these proposed changes, we do not have to provide them by law. This doesn’t make the changes any easier but explains why we are considering cuts to these services.

“If we don’t make the cuts to these services, we will have to cut more from another area in adult social care.”

The Cabinet will look at each of the proposals on 15th July, taking in to consideration the responses to the consultation, as well as the contents of a detailed report looking at the potential impact of the cuts, before any final decisions are made.