A number of proposed savings put forward by Carmarthenshire County Council for public consultation have been taken off the table by its executive board.
Cllr David Jenkins, executive board member for resources, has confirmed that proposed budget cuts to inclusion services and respite care will no longer be considered and will be removed from the proposals that goes to Full Council for decision on February 21.
A proposed reduction in funding for older people’s day care services is also being revisited, with the efficiencies proposed for 2018/19 reduced by £50k, and a further £25k in 2019/20.
The news will be welcomed by thousands of people who gave the council their feedback during an extensive budget consultation over several weeks.
“The settlement this year was far more favourable and supportive of local government than it had originally been anticipated,” said Cllr David Jenkins.
“This has meant we have been able to revisit some of our proposals within the original budget outline. This takes account of the consultation process and responds to the feedback from the proposals that were not supported.
“I would like to express my thanks to all who took part in the consultation or responded to the surveys. One thing that is generally clear from those who took part is that they do appreciate that difficult choices need to be made.”
Leader of the council, Cllr Emlyn Dole, said: “Setting budgets is a huge task, but it’s been done very conscientiously indeed. It shows we have listened.”
Deputy leader Cllr Mair Stephens added: “We have seen how people have responded. People have given their detailed comments, and their ideas have very often led to new ways of working, and I thank them for that.”
Cllr Jane Tremlett, executive board member for health and social care, and Cllr Glynog Davies, executive board member for education and children’s services, both welcomed news that respite provision was no longer affected by proposed savings.
“We have listened to the people,” said Cllr Davies. “This respite provision is so important to families who quite often are under a great deal of stress. I’m so pleased that we have revisited this, and that this cut will not happen.”