Cumbria County Council is offering a "weak" service to council tax payers, according to a new report.
The Audit Commission report highlights poor management
The Audit Commission study highlights poor management and problems in social services which are failing vulnerable children in the county.
There is some praise for education, and improvements in recycling, but there is also criticism for the council's poor roads maintenance record.
The report downgrades the authority's performance from "fair" to "weak", and says that not enough work has been done to improve the problems highlighted in the December 2002 report.
In November, the Department of Health rated Cumbria's social services as one of the worst in the country.
Inspectors found that the service was badly managed, and that cases were poorly assessed and recorded.
The services were giving them a zero star rating out of a possible three, classing them as failing.
Leader of the council, Rex Toft, said that he was very disappointed with the report.
The authority is talking to the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister about how to improve its performance.