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Last Updated: Friday, 3 March 2006, 09:50 GMT
Council begins jobs cut process
Volunteers are being sought by council bosses on Teesside looking to reduce staff to stave off a budget overspend.

Redcar and Cleveland Council says it is having to find an extra 5m to fund services in the coming financial year.

It has set a budget of 105m and approved a 4.7% hike in council tax. But councillors blamed the government for a lower than expected annual grant.

The council had expected to lose about 100 jobs, but officials say the number will now be "well below" that figure.

Vulnerable children

The authority's cabinet member for corporate resources, Glyn Nightingale, said: "We have asked our workforce if they would be prepared to go on a register for voluntary redundancy or early retirement.

"The result has been a positive response from the workforce."

Meanwhile, the council has confirmed it is to spend 2m on a free concessionary travel scheme to begin across the borough in April. The move will benefit about 1,400 pass holders.

The authority also confirmed 600,000 to be spent on services for the elderly and more than 1m on services for vulnerable children and young families.

The council says reduced grant aid resulted from an underestimation of its population by central government.


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