The £69M question
THE financial black hole facing Swansea Council may be far worse than has been announced so far.
To date the council has said it needs to save £45 million over the next three years.
However, a report going before the council cabinet on Tuesday states that £69 million in savings may be needed over four years.
But the council has told the Post this figure is purely speculative.
It is based on factors including an ongoing reduction of four per cent in external funding, combined with pressures from within.
These pressures include anticipated pay awards, pay and grading matters, extra demand for services and the end of a national insurance rebate worth £7 million.
The report states that the council has lost 500 staff over the past two years, but that more radical change is needed.
The Post revealed yesterday that significant job losses are expected.
The Welsh Government's draft budget for 2014/15 has set out a 5.8 per cent cut for councils.
The precise amount of cash each authority will receive will be revealed on Wednesday.
A council spokesman said: "The report to cabinet shows Swansea Council expects to have to make savings of £45 million based on the information it currently has from the Welsh Government.
"The illustrative figure (£69 million) for 2016/17 is not a savings target and is only a projected figure should the Welsh Government continue to develop its budget plans along its current lines.
"This may not be the case and therefore it would be completely misleading to say it is in any way factually based on current knowledge.
"The amount for 2016/17 will be dependant on further announcements of Westminster funding to the Welsh Government and then their decisions on allocations which are currently not known."