Birmingham City Council to slash budget by £300m: Here's which services are at risk

Birmingham City Council has announced that it will make the largest budget cuts in local authority history. Credit: ITV Central

Birmingham City Council is set to vote on £300million worth of cuts to services over two years, making it the largest budget cut in local authority history.

At a full budget council meeting on Tuesday 5 March, councillors will make a decision on proposed cuts to local services, a year after effectively declaring itself bankrupt.

Among the most drastic changes that residents will feel is a 9.99% increase to council tax for the next two years, meaning that by 2026 council tax would increase by 21%.

This means that if you're on the lowest rate of council tax in Birmingham, you'd be paying £1524.58, up from £1270.48.

Birmingham City Council has also requested a £1.25 billion bailout to the Government, to help balance the books.

What are the major changes?

  • Fortnightly, rather than weekly, bin collections starting next year.

  • Reduced spending on highways maintenance - this means less money spent on roads, pavements and cycle paths.

  • Increased cost of death - burial prices will increase by 13.25% and the cost to buy a grave will increase by more than 10%.

  • Almost £24million will be cut from adult social care.

  • Less money for culture. This means grants to organisations including the Birmingham REP Theatre, City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and IKON Gallery will be cut 50% this year and 100% next year.

  • Support for Black History Month and Birmingham Heritage Week will face an 100% cut in council funding from next year.

  • Dimmed streetlights - streetlights will be less bright in order to save £900,000.

  • Reduced grounds maintenance.

  • Reducing mobile rubbish and recycling lorries.

  • Abandoning plans for neighbourhood action coordinators. This was a pilot scheme that focused on community safety and the local environment in Birmingham.

  • Leisure centres in Birmingham will focus on profits and review discount schemes and opening hours.

  • Council-run community centres will be at risk as the council will look to stop running these facilities.

  • The council is also proposing that some council buildings will be closed.

On the streets of Birmingham, ITV News Central spoke to residents to see what their opinions were on the proposed cuts.

Councillor John Cotton, leader of Birmingham City Council has said he wants to "apologise unreservedly for both the significant spending reductions and this year's substantial council tax increase".

Pictured is leader of Birmingham City Council, Councillor John Cotton who has apologised for the cuts. Credit: PA Images

He insists that there was "No alternative than to face these challenges head on. And we will do whatever is necessary to put the council back on a sound financial footing".

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