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May on Somerset cuts: 'Local government has had to make some tough decisions'

Theresa May says that government have been ensuring more funding is available for local councils. Credit: ITV West Country

Theresa May has defended local government cuts, blaming "tough decisions" on the "mess of the public finances left by the last Labour government".

Somerset Council says it plans to save around £28m in the next 18 months, but the Prime Minister insists they have been ensuring "more funding is available to local councils".

The council agreed to a four-year funding settlement in 2016 which, according to Mrs May, provides them with, "an extra £30 million until 2019/2020".

The council is proposing to save around £28m over the next 18 months. Credit: ITV West Country

Earlier this month leader of Somerset Council, David Fothergill, announced they are "at the very sharp end of austerity" and would be making dramatic cuts.

The proposals were approved at a cabinet meeting on 12 September.

Controversial proposals to reduce funding for the Young Carers' Service have been deferred until next year following our report on the impact on young carers.

Services likely to see reduced funding include social care and the Citizens Advice Bureau.

The number of roads gritted on the Winter gritting route will also be cut.

We recognise there are certain areas where local councils have been under pressure, such as social care, and that's why we have also ensured that more funding is available to councils to spend on social care.

– Theresa May, Prime Minister

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