Massive saving if councils join up

MORE than £150million of taxpayers' money could be saved if Suffolk's councils integrate services, authority leaders claimed today.The move - described as “a new dawn” for local Government in the county - would see the county council and six of the seven districts working together, sharing back office functions such as human resources and IT and joining forces to introduce common policies.

MORE than £150million of taxpayers' money could be saved if Suffolk's councils integrate services, authority leaders claimed today.

The move - described as “a new dawn” for local Government in the county - would see the county council and six of the seven districts working together, sharing back office functions such as human resources and IT and joining forces to introduce common policies.

The pathfinder bid, which has to be approved by the Government, claims that increased co-operation between councils will produce savings over five years of between £144.3m and £156.3m, which is 6.2% of local government spending in the county.

Of this, efficiency and modernisations savings would account for up to £95.1m and about £46m would be saved by sharing back office functions.

County council leader Jeremy Pembroke said: “Our vision is a model for modern 21st Century government which will give power back to local communities.

“We want to create an efficient and flexible framework which fits the needs of all parts of the county.”

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