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Welcome to birmingham.gov.uk

Responding to the challenge, looking to the future

Broad proposals for the future role and purpose of Birmingham City Council are outlined in a green paper, published on 23 October.

The paper sets out what it is considering changing as a result of the substantial budget cuts of £315 million that the council needs to make before 2018.

Read the summary of the green paper or the full version (PDFs below) and, if you have any comments and/or would like further information on the council’s budget plans, fill in this survey.

Responding to the challenge, looking to the future

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Responding to the challenge, looking to the future - summary

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Responding to the challenge, looking to the future - briefing

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Birmingham City Council Service Reviews 2014

  • The process of reviewing all the services provided by the council is now complete
  • Seven reviews have identified where savings could be made
  • A green paper has been published setting out plans for saving money
  • Your feedback is welcome as part of a discussion that will shape our budget
  • We will publish detailed budget proposals for formal consultation in December
  • Next year’s budget for 2015/16 will be the hardest yet
  • We will lose some services and will have to radically redesign others
  • We have already cut our workforce, and will see it reduce further
  • We will need to work more with other public services, with businesses and communities

Our core priorities are: Fairness, Prosperity and Democracy
Our top priorities are protecting children and helping to create more jobs for Birmingham people

  • Services have been reviewed according to how they contribute to our priorities
  • We have made £460 million of cuts since 2010
  • We need to cut over £300 million more by 2018
  • Government funding has been reduced by £265 million a year and will be cut by £105 million next year
  • Next year’s cuts to our basic grant from the Government will be the highest since austerity began
  • The Government has cut authorities in deprived areas more
  • We will need to make long term changes to adjust to reduced funding
  • We cannot always use reserves
  • We have planned for council tax increases. Each one per cent increase in council tax gives an extra £2.6 million income a year

A Future Council

Our core priorities of Fairness, Prosperity and Democracy remain the same. But we need a new relationship with residents which supports local action and increased local governance. We want our residents to take action on the issues that most concern and interest them.

We have developed the 'triple devolution' approach to summarise how we want to run things in the future. This will involve different activities taking place at three different levels: the city region (working with our neighbouring councils), the city and our local neighbourhoods. We are campaigning to get central government to pass down to us more control of spending so that we can carry out these activities more effectively (for example helping to create jobs, build new transport systems and manage our health and social care services better).

Three big change programmes are being implemented to achieve this:

  • Creating a joined up approach across the city region by sharing resources with neighbouring councils
  • Working more closely with the NHS to integrate health and social care services and changing our relationship with schools
  • Bringing together our local environmental and housing services and encouraging community groups and social enterprises to contribute to the local area

You can read more about how power could be devolved out to the regions and to local neighbourhoods.

The seven reviews were as follows:

  • Children’s Safeguarding and Education
  • Health and Adult Social Care
  • Employment Support and Transportation Infrastructure
  • Devolved Local Services
  • District Service Level Agreements (DSLAs) and Regulatory Services
  • Financial and Support Services
  • Externally Contracted and Council-Traded Services

2014 Service Review process

Each review was run by a project board, chaired by a council Cabinet Member independent of the services under review. Lead Executive Members, Overview and Scrutiny and backbenchers were also on the board, as well as senior council officers.

Reviews gathered information on each service area, identifying essential activities and legal obligations. Costs were worked out and the contribution of each service area to our priorities was assessed alongside value for money.

The green paper outlines how services could run for less money, delivering essential activities. Changes to and withdrawal of services are also set out. A summary version of the paper is also available.

You can comment in the following ways

We cannot respond individually to comments made but all views will be recorded and fed into a full report to be taken into consideration when council members take their decisions on Birmingham’s budget.

Read more on the 2014 Service Reviews.