RESIDENTS in North Yorkshire are being invited to learn more about the financial challenges facing the area and have their say on how the county council manages its budget.

As part of North Yorkshire County Council’s budget consultation, public events will be held over the next two weeks.

At the events, people will be able to talk to council officers and will then be encouraged to complete the council’s online budget consultation, Your Services, Your Say, at by January 21.

Council leader Cllr Carl Les said: “Demand for our services continues to increase, particularly in the areas of social care for both children and adults, and our total funding is reducing. We estimate that by the end of austerity, every £1 we had to spend on services will have fallen to about 60p.

“That’s why it is really important that people take part in this consultation and we hear their opinions. Our consultation events will enable people to become better informed about the pressures and options facing the county before giving their views.”

The budget engagement events will be held across the county, including at:

Selby Summit Indoor Adventure Centre/Selby Leisure Centre, January 7, 3.30pm to 5pm

• Victoria Shopping Centre, Harrogate, January 14, 12.30pm to 2pm

• Scarborough College, January 16, 12.30pm to 2pm

• Helmsley Library, January 18, 11.30am to 1pm

The council says the projected budget shortfall of nearly £200million by 2021 to 22 has been met in part by the council achieving £157million of savings so far. However, it says a further £40million will need to be found to meet the remaining funding gap.

Anyone who is unable to attend an event or to complete the survey online can talk to the council’s customer service team on 01609 780780.