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Lancashire’s Blind Budget

Lancashire Labour Councillors are demanding that the Conservative Administration comes clean on their budget proposals to cut School Buses. Which services will be affected by the proposed removal of School Bus Services where no pupils statutorily entitled to free school transport have travelled on a contracted school bus for 2 years and where season ticket revenue does not cover the cost of the contract, saving the council £100,000.

The proposal is likely to have a greater impact on children living in rural and low population areas where travelling numbers are low. This will only add to the closure of shops, post offices and services that are undermining the close community structures, leaving people with a greater sense of isolation.

Cllr Erica Lewis, Shadow Highways and Transport, said “In order to identify the budget saving they must know the School Bus Services they want to cut. Parents need to plan how their children will be getting to school next September. With no alternative transport parents will have to make some very serious decisions, which could affect the whole family and their futures.”

The council has also identified further savings by switching off Residential Street Lighting from midnight to 5 am, without informing local residents the areas where the street lights will be switched off.

Cllr Erica Lewis said “How can you have open and honest consultation with local people when the council is determined to keep them in the dark regarding switching off their street lights. The implications of switching off these lights goes beyond saving money with many residents fearing the worst.”

“Labour have been forced to go through the “Freedom of Information Act” in order to obtain this information. As the council have reneged on the promises to provide further information on these cuts. The Conservatives Government’s Blind Brexit has collapsed, now we have the council putting forward a Blind Budget.”

“The Conservative Administration has, stopped councillors speaking, shut down their own budget meeting and are now clearly failing to provide local people with the information they need to respond properly to this consultation. They are turning local democracy in to a very sick dangerous joke.”

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