Have your say on how to help council save £9.8m

Gill Alexander.

Gill Alexander.

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Have your say

Residents and businesses will have a chance to have their say and help shape the future of their town at an event next week.

Hartlepool Borough Council is running its Your Say, Our Future as it faces cuts of £9.8million in the next three years and so far more than 700 people have had their say.

A series of meetings are being held around the town with the next one taking place at the Civic Centre on Tuesday, August 9, starting at 2pm.

Residents are also being encouraged to have their say by completing a questionnaire in the initiative runs until early September.

Gill Alexander, the council’s chief executive, said: “Despite the ongoing financial pressures, the council remains very ambitious for what it wants to achieve for the town.

“Your Say, Our Future is a town-wide conversation about the kind of place we want Hartlepool to be and how we can work together with local residents and the business community to achieve our shared ambitions for the town and local neighbourhoods.

“The response so far has been really positive. We’ve had over 700 questionnaires completed and the comments and suggestions at the town-wide events have been constructive and helpful.”

As part of the dialogue, residents are being given examples of how council money is spent and it is hoped that this will trigger a debate about ways in which local people can support the council to achieve its ambition.

Residents have been informed as part of the process that 33% of the council’s budget (£28m) is spent supporting adults with social care needs which represent 5% of the local population.

This includes older people and residents who have learning disabilities, mental health needs or drug and alcohol issues.

Councillor Stephen Thomas, chair of the council’s Adult Services Committee, said: “As a council we support people to live safely and independently at home longer, but there is also a role for the local community to help prevent social isolation.

“Supporting family members and neighbours can help them to stay healthy, and getting help for them at an early stage can save the council and other organisations significant resources in the long run.”

For help and advice for older people, visit www.hartlepoolnow.co.uk

Anyone unable to attend Tuesday’s event can attend a similar one at the Borough Hall on Thursday, August 11, starting at 7pm.

To book a place for either event, call (01429) 523002 or 523003 or email yoursay@hartlepool.gov.uk

For further information, including details of the survey, visit www.hartlepool.gov.uk/your-say- our-future