Reform is the keystone of the Stronger Somerset case. Without it, local government in Somerset will quickly run out of money.
Savings from reorganisation would soon be eaten up by spiralling costs of adults’ and children’s services, if they continue to be run as they are. The One Somerset proposal would simply mean the county would go broke in 5 years instead of 3 years. Only the Stronger Somerset business case sets out the ideas, fresh thinking and evidence to show how reform can be achieved and sustain excellent services right across our communities.
Key to this is reform of adult care and services for children and young people. We will use the savings we will make in reducing five councils to two, cutting out duplication in administrative and support services, to invest in the reform of these key services – making them better and affordable into the future.
We will invest in:
- Data so we can target resources where we most needed
- Early intervention and work on wider determinants of health and wellbeing to prevent dependency on expensive ‘crisis’ services
- New approaches in adults’ and children’s services
- Place-led solutions to reduce demand on services. Villages, towns and communities will be able to choose a level of participation that suits them. And we will also ensure we have the finances available to support the continuation of those vital frontline services everyone depends on such as roads, waste, pavements and parks
Leader of Somerset West and Taunton Council Cllr Federica Smith-Roberts explains the opportunities for stronger services from local government reorganisation:
You can find out more about our approach in our full proposal, in the People section starting on p96