An open letter composed by organising group Bromley Cuts Concern (Bromley Against the Cuts) submitted to local media this week.
Bromley Cuts Concern welcome the suggestion of the MP for Bromley and Chislehurst and Local Government Minister, Bob Neill, that councils should draw on their reserves to relieve the pressure on service cuts. This was also recommended by Liberal Democrat MP and local government minister, Andrew Stunell, in early March.
Bromley Council has £58 million in its reserves and in the last financial year made £4.8 million in rent from commercial property assets which include farms and several shopping parades.
It would make great sense to use some of these reserves and assets to save libraries, park warden jobs, school crossing patrols, connexions, youth and children and family centres, increase to day care centres charges, sheltered housing and children at risk reduction in funding, in-house home care provision, school clothing grants, and public toilets.
Much of this is still being reconfigured by the Council, and the public as council tax payers and voters need to be fully involved in the consultation process. The cuts which will affect vulnerable people in particular, and once these facilities go, will be hard to re-introduce. Investment in jobs is also vital for future growth. The £33 million cuts which Bromley Council have approved is completely negative, when there are other options.
Please come and express your views at a public meeting organised by Bromley Cuts Concern at 7.30 pm on May 25th at the HG Wells Centre , St Marks Rd, Bromley.