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Tuesday, November 28, 2023

11 council jobs to be axed

Eleven jobs within a Leeds City Council department are set to be axed as the cash-strapped local authority tries to cut costs.

The posts, which are in the council’s city development unit, are all currently vacant, so no existing staff will be made redundant as a result of the move.

Among the jobs being lost are a markets inspector, a bridges technician and a regeneration officer.

Put together, cutting the 11 posts will save the council just over £470,000, according to a document outlining the decision on the local authority’s website.

A spokesperson for the council said: “This decision only impacts vacant roles, so no existing staff are subject to compulsory redundancy as a consequence of this decision.

“All areas of the council have been asked to identify areas for potential additional savings.  Due to significant pressures on the council’s budget, freezes on recruitment and non-essential spending are already being undertaken by the council.”

The decision has raised questions about the impact on the employees remaining, with trade union reps having asked the council to “ensure retained staff are supported through” the changes, according to the online decision notice.

Reps have also requested a “thorough assessment” of any changes in sickness levels following the redundancies.

The news is the latest indication of how stretched the council’s finances are.

For the first time in living memory, it had to use cash reserves to balance its books at the end of the 2022/23 financial year.

Council tax bills will rise for local residents by just under five per cent this month, while rent for council house tenants will rise by seven per cent.

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