Councillor spells out authority’s £2 million budget cut

Boston Borough Council
Boston Borough Council

A top councillor has hailed the authority’s work to shave £2 million off its budget – and says the finances are unrecognisable from two years ago.

Coun Raymond Singleton-McGuire gave a glowing verdict of the state of Boston Borough Council’s books at last week’s cabinet meeting.

Raymond Singleton-McGuire

Raymond Singleton-McGuire

Speaking to The Standard after the meeting, the finance portfolio holder, he outlined the key things he says have been done to cut the council’s budget from about £10.5 million in 2010 to about £8.5 million next year.

Coun Singleton-McGuire said: “I’m a tax payer as well, and I have issues, even though I’m on the council and the portfolio holder there are things that aren’t quite getting done as they should and I put them forward.”

He said the refurbishment of the Geoff Moulder Leisure Centre has been important and a big success - with the number of swimming sessions 3,807 above the 68,000 target and gym use up 27 per cent.

Coun Singleton-McGuire also said leasing out the Peter Pain Sports Centre to Boston College had saved about £1 million and that the green waste scheme was a big hit with the household recyling rate reaching 48 per cent – above the 35 per cent target.

In total 11,600 signed up for green waste collections, saving 2,700 tonnes of garden waste that would have gone to costly landfill sites.

The scheme was an election pledge of Coun Singleton-McGuire and has been taken on by Coun Mike Brookes since the Tories’ borough election win.

Coun Singleton-McGuire said: “I’m not showboating, I made that promise and I delivered it.”

Staff have also chipped in with money saving ideas – which have helped the council stay free from wholesale redundancies as seen elsewhere.

Coun Singleton-McGuire stressed the search for efficiencies still goes on, adding: “Just because we’ve done it one way for the past 20 years doesn’t necessarily mean it’s that’s the best method going forward.

“There needs to be more creative thinking financially.”