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SLC Set To Shed Jobs
South Lanarkshire Council are set to shed over 400 jobs while this could be the last year Christmas lights are switched on in Rutherglen and Cambuslang.
The cash-strapped authority is set to discuss a potential £36.3million cuts package for the financial year 2016/17 at an executive committee meeting.
Jobs under threat include classroom assistants, community wardens, grounds maintenance staff and day care workers. Education is set to be worst hit, with 190 job losses and cuts of nearly £7m. This will include 126 support roles, including classroom assistants, saving £2m.
A further 27 jobs will be scrapped in integrated childrens’ services, with 24 going in youth learning services.
But council leader Eddie McAvoy, who said the local authority were committed to not making compulsory redundancies, said he hoped children’s education would not be disturbed.
He insisted: "This will not affect the teacher-pupil ratio, but it will add to a teachers’ workload.
"The attainment level in South Lanarkshire is high, and this shouldn’t impact on that, but you simply don’t know what will happen."
Social work will see 72 jobs go. This will include the closure of the cafe facilities at David Walker House in Rutherglen, removing employment and training opportunities.
A further 71.6 positions will be lost in community and enterprise, 13 in finance and 12 in housing. The final 52.5 roles will be lost through efficiencies.
Gala days such as Landemer Day and Summerfest will also be expected to fund the provision of traffic management. This will be phased in over three years, eventually netting the council £52,000 a year.
A draft report to councillors details £28.8m of savings, with a further £7.5m coming from additional council tax, capital funding and the temporary use of reserves.
Sponsorship or community funding will be required for town’s to have the Christmas lights switched on from 2016, although the festive trees will be retained.
This will save the council £120,000 a year. No final decision on the cuts package is likely to be made at the meeting, but councillors will be required to come up with costed alternatives if changes are to be made.
The council won’t know their actual grant settlement until January, but are required to have a set budget by the end of the financial year.
Councillor McAvoy said the situation was “only going to get worse over the coming years.”
And he dismissed a recent report that suggested local authorities had been more than compensated for the council tax freeze: "That’s not true. The report said if we received the £70m we should have until 2014/15 then we would have been compensated, but we haven’t received anything extra since 2010/11.
"Last year was a flat-rate settlement, so that means the same as previous years."