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Shake-up for Selby District Council is agreed
ONE of the biggest shake-ups in the history of Selby District Council is set to go ahead, despite fears the plans are “rough around the edges”.
The introduction of the controversial new organisational framework, or Service Delivery Vehicle (SDV), was agreed on Tuesday. It will see a core of only 14 council staff contract out services to third parties.
The council hope the system will create savings of about £1.5 million this year, and a total of £3 million by 2014, by helping voluntary groups take on commissions. Resulting council job cuts are expected as early as next month.
Coun Mark Crane, the council leader, said: “This is a huge change for the whole organisation, but really shows that we’re leading the way when it comes to new ways of thinking to deal with reductions in funding.
“We’d have to make cuts whether we changed the way we worked or not, but developing this new model gives us a unique opportunity to minimise the impact of budget cuts on frontline services.”
Labour councillor Steve Shaw-Wright is a member of the group set up by the council to help plan the scheme, but he claimed the SDV was still a work in progress. “It is still very embryonic and rough around the edges,” he said.
“The council’s plan is to learn as we go along, but I feel that it would be better learning while we are not putting peoples’ livelihoods at risk. We feel it’s too far, too fast and unwanted. I feel that given more time, it could be an easier process if we weren’t racing to do it before we move offices.”
Coun Crane said: “Whilst such large-scale change is obviously unsettling for many staff, this is a real opportunity to create a brand new way of delivering local services, which will be sustainable in the long-term despite the ongoing reductions in funding.”
The arrangements will now go to formal consultation with council staff and union representatives until Monday, April 4, and the council hope to implement the changes by August.