"The Government sets the general direction on spending and has been very clear since 2010 that they would make large public sector funding cuts.
They set the level of funding that we receive and we have to operate within our budget. If we didn’t, it would not be a legal budget and decision-making would be taken away from local people and their elected representatives.
The majority of savings we are making this year are coming from back office functions and we continue to try to safeguard frontline services as much as possible.”
More top news
The Siddle family say they're relieved at being home at last, after their trip to China ended with a fortnight in quarantine.
The petition launched by Dennis Patton from South Shields is calling for laws to prevent the harassment of celebrities by the media.
The RSPCA is appealing for information after 16 more snakes were found dumped. Last week 13 snakes were discovered in similar circumstances.