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Loos staying open says Mayor

Bristol Mayor George Ferguson has decided not to close public toilets, shut museums or remove bus subsidies in his budget to be debated by senior councillors tomorrow.

They are among 20 changes made following public consultation on proposed cuts. He also plans to raise council tax by almost 2%, a move supported by two thirds of those who took part. The council needs to save £83 million over three years.

George Ferguson has made 20 changes to his budget after public consultation. Credit: ITV News West Country

Mayor plans budget changes

Bristol’s Mayor George Ferguson has announced his intentions to remove or change nearly 20 of his draft budget proposals.

It follows consultations with public as well as changes to funding projections.

The mayor will announce today he's also introducing new funds for people in hardship, supporting the living wage and increasing investment in parks and play.

It comes ahead of a full Cabinet discussion and debate on the budget tomorrow

The mayor is still planning to raise council tax by 2%, but, among other changes, there is to be a reprieve to 22 public toilets, and a change to proposals for older people.

A plan to remove subsidy to St Paul's Learning Centre will be postponed.

“This is still a very challenging budget but I am very pleased to have the chance to make changes.

We’ve had Bristol’s biggest ever budget consultation and I’ve listened to what’s been said.

Not every concern can be answered, but I’ve looked at every proposal in light of comments made.

– Bristol Mayor, George Ferguson


Bristol Mayor to hold first Cabinet meeting

George Ferguson's first Cabinet meeting will be held in South Bristol. It'll take place at The Park Centre in Knowle to try to open up local democratic decision-making.

The Mayor has promised to hold at least half of his monthly cabinet meetings in the community away from City Hall.

George Ferguson will hold his first Cabinet meeting after being elected last month Credit: Rod Minchin/PA Wire

Full report: Bristol Mayor sworn in

George Ferguson was today officially sworn in as the first elected Mayor of Bristol and soon after he was making policy changes. One of his first decisions was to scrap on-street parking charges on Sundays - introduced only three weeks ago.

He's also renamed the council headquarters City Hall - but with a growing budget deficit, there'll be much tougher decisions ahead. Watch our political correspondent Bob Constantine's report here.

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