50 jobs at risk as Blackpool Council aims to save £5.5m

By Lancashire Business View

01 Dec 2017

Blackpool Council has announced its proposals to save £5.5m, including as many as 50 redundancies and the end of 20 contract posts.

The council must make the savings in the 2018/19 financial year due to government funding cuts.

Coun Simon Blackburn, Leader of Blackpool Council, said of the job losses: " This is nowhere near as many posts as have been lost in previous years, but that is no consolation to the hard-working staff that will be affected.

“This year we have tried to protect front line services, as much as we possibly can, by looking at new and creative ways of saving money and generating income. However, the difficult reality is that the budget proposals may result in a maximum of 50 redundancies with an additional 20 contract posts ending - although we expect the final figure to be lower.

"In addition, all employees will be asked once again to volunteer to take unpaid leave which will save approximately £1m a year."

The councillor also said that Blackpool would take advantage of its ability to borrow at low interest rates to invest in infrastructure and to help businesses to expand.

He added: “The only way that we can survive and create a town that is great to live and work in is by being entrepreneurial; investing in our infrastructure, people and businesses to generate our own income, instead of relying on reduced government grants."

He also pointed to numerous big construction projects, including the extension of the tramway and the new conference centre, as evidence that the council was working to 'make Blackpool better'.

“Votes of confidence in the future of Blackpool can also be seen in the construction of the £20m 131 room Hampton by Hilton complex near to the Pleasure Beach and the multi-million pound Sands Hotel, both private investment schemes," he said.

“All of these projects are not only safeguarding and generating jobs, new builds such as the Winter Garden conference centre promise to create additional year-round employment opportunities across the town. Enhanced levels of skills will also be delivered through flagship developments such as the Lancashire Energy Headquarters which opened in the Blackpool Airport Enterprise Zone and offers a high standard training facility, providing a full range of technical and professional education. “Investing now is absolutely vital to create jobs, boost visitor numbers, drive the economy forward, and secure income for future generations. Those who would refuse to carry out essential bridge repairs, highways improvements, public transport improvements and making sound financial investments in Blackpool businesses are not only short sighted, but are condemning the town to a downward spiral that would ultimately end in failure.”

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