Join debate on county

A series of meetings are to be held so residents can join in discussions about current and future prospects for the county, and to consider Northumberland County Council’s spending priorities.

The council’s corporate director of finance will give some background to the challenging financial position currently facing the local authority and will outline the budget position for 2014/15.

Over the next four years, the county council will have to make £130million cuts following on the back of £130million savings that have been made since local government reorganisation.

The floor will then be opened to the public inviting questions and debate focussing on the prospects for the county against a background of the financial constraints.

Coun Grant Davey, leader of Northumberland County Council, said: “These are undoubtedly challenging financial times for Northumberland County Council and we will be targeting our spending and investment wisely.

“The discussion evenings give us the chance to explain the issues surrounding the council’s current financial position while providing local people with the opportunity to put forward their thoughts and views. We hope that the public will come along and join in the debate.”

The meetings will be held for the north area on Monday, December 9, at 6pm at Druridge Bay Community Centre; the west area on Tuesday, December 10, at 6pm at Queens Hall Arts Centre in Hexham, and the south east area on Wednesday, December 11, at 6pm at the Briardale Centre in Blyth.

The views raised at the area committees will then be fed back to the county-wide debate which will take place after the county council’s budget meeting in February.