1. ITV Report

Bristol City Council to axe 1,000 jobs

Bristol City Council will axe up to 1,000 jobs to save money - a sixth of its full time work force.

The cuts come as the authority aims to save £29 million from its budget this year.

workers in full time posts.
Marvin Rees says the financial challenges facing the council are huge and much bigger than first thought, Credit: Marvin Rees

City mayor Marvin Rees said he had "inherited a huge financial challenge" which had grown increasingly in the past couple of months.

He added his only option to save the money was to cut jobs.

People employed by the council
Marvin Rees shakes hands with predecessor George Ferguson. Credit: ITV West Country

A voluntary severance scheme has now been launched by the council and a period of formal consultation is taking place.

I have inherited a huge financial challenge which is proving bigger than we knew even a month or two ago. We continue to make savings in many ways, but we cannot close the gap without reducing the number of jobs at the council.

This scheme is about giving people the option to leave voluntarily, which is the right thing to do. We will support staff as best we can throughout this difficult time.

– Marvin Rees, Mayor of Bristol
Credit: Joe Giddens/PA

He said he would ensure the council continue to maintain the " life-and-limb services" while improving people's lives with "the resources I've got."

Today marks the first really tough choice which has to be made given the financial position we inherited following years of burdens being placed on local government by the austerity measures of central government.

Sadly there will be more tough choices ahead and we will continue to involve the city in meaningful discussion about how we face these challenges.

– Cllr Craig Cheney, Cabinet Member for Finance and Governance

Any staff leaving voluntarily will finish work by the end of September.

Further plans for the council’s budget from April 2017 – April 2020 will be published in the autumn for public consultation ahead of a new Medium Term Financial Plan being put to Full Council in February 2017.