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Council leaders to consider Hampshire budget savings

£10m in Hampshire county council savings will be discussed at a meeting next week

Author: Jonathan RichardsPublished 5 hours ago
Last updated 5 hours ago

Cuts to school crossing patrols and household waste recycling centres across Hampshire have been put on hold after a consultation on budget cuts.

Hampshire county council say they’ve come with alternative ways to save the services.

However ten million pounds of savings including a reduction in passenger transport funding and highways maintenance will be discussed next week.

The county council has to find 80 million pounds to balance their budget by 2023.

The recommendations, set out in a detailed report, will be considered on 23 September by Councillor Rob Humby, the County Council’s Deputy Leader and Executive Lead Member for Economy, Transport and Environment.

The report also confirms that, following the Council’s public consultation in the summer – ‘Serving Hampshire; Balancing the Budget’ – some options previously in scope for potential savings are not being recommended for inclusion in the current Savings Programme for 2023.

Budget changes

  1. Closure of up to half of the Household Waste Recycling Centre (HWRC) network will not form part of the Department’s savings proposals.

It is being recommended that the saving would be met instead from re-setting the County Council’s assumptions about funding provision for the costs associated with future waste growth. However, the report warns that the effectiveness of this measure in the long term – to help retain existing services in accordance with residents’ priorities – will be dependent on all households continuing to recycle more and waste less, as well as making changes in the collection systems and waste and recycling provision in Hampshire.

  1. County Council funding for the non-statutory School Crossing Patrol Service should not be withdrawn

The reduced provision for waste funding, as a result of the amended waste disposal proposals, has meant that the cost for the School Crossing Patrol service could be met. This would be largely attributable to a change in behaviour, with residents wasting less and recycling more, leading to a reduction in the associated disposal costs incurred, for which contingency funding had been earmarked.

Furthermore, in addition to the consultation feedback indicating strong public support for maintaining the School Crossing Patrol Service, another influencing factor is the increased popularity of walking and cycling for local journeys, arising from the COVID-19 pandemic, coinciding with Government support, in terms of funding and policy, for encouraging active means of travel and less reliance on the private car. To this end, it is recognised that School Crossing Patrols can play a part in underpinning this wider national agenda.


Opportunities identified for efficiencies to be considered by Councillor Humby, for commending to the County Council’s Cabinet and full Council later this autumn, include:

  • A reduction in Passenger Transport funding – with the target revised to £800,000, from an original proposal of £1.5 million. The recommendation is made in the light of a consistent rise in passenger numbers and the Authority’s effective partnership with bus operators to secure good coverage of bus services across the county. The saving would be achieved by a range of measures including making smarter use of contracts and purchasing to secure savings through additional income and a modest rise in charges for community transport – reflecting feedback from customers confirming that they would rather see services maintained and pay more as opposed to seeing them lost;
  • £1 million in highways maintenance contract efficiencies through changes to existing processes, procedures and contractual mechanisms and including savings and income from manufacturing, re-using and selling recycled highways materials;
  • Changes in the Economy, Transport and Environment Department’s Operating Model to achieve a saving of £1.466 million. This would include a focus on further income generation from trading and charging activities – for example the sale of professional services.

If the recommendations are supported by Councillor Humby, they will then go to the Authority’s Cabinet as a whole, in October, before a final decision is made in November by the full County Council.

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