Councillors at County Hall are scouring the Northamptonshire County Council budget for £19.5m in savings to spend on its adult and children’s service.
The council that is the level of funding needed making real improvements in its children services and adddress the unprecedented demand for adult social care.
A ‘task force’ has now been set up by the council to work with all service areas to identify how the council can deliver a balanced budget this year and help mitigate the impact of these increases in spending.
Cabinet member for finance Councillor Bill Parker said: “Once again our rigorous and effective system of financial monitoring has highlighted early that we are experiencing further significant increases in demand for adult social care services while our so-far successful efforts to transform children services come with a price tag.
“The benefit of having such an early warning of these pressures is we are in the best possible place to face up to them.
“We now have in place a special task force of leading council officers to look how we can work across all of our services to find the money needed to off-set the increases in spending in adults and children’s care.”
The monthly financial report is published every month to show how progress is being made in council efforts to reduce its overall budget by £126.2m over the next five years on top of the £177.9m worth of savings already delivered over the last five years.
This month it shows that while the council is already delivering 38 per cent of the savings proposed in this year’s budget, further action is needed to deliver the remaining parts of the budget while also taking into account the new spending in adults and children services.
Councillor Parker said: “Clearly when you have to take so much out of budgets year after year it is entirely normal to be in a position this early in a financial year to require further work to land the budget. That effort has undoubtedly been complicated with these extra pressures emerging.
“I have every confidence that once again this council will rise to this challenge.”