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More Sefton Council cuts may see lights switched off on Formby bypass

LIGHTS will be switched off on one of Merseyside’s busiest roads the Formby bypass under multi-million cuts proposed by Sefton Council bosses.

Sefton council has put forward a huge shopping list of savings as it attempts to balance a £44m budget black hole.

The proposed cuts – laid bare in an 108-page “transformation programme” document – threaten up to 200 jobs, it was today claimed and include:

Switching off street lights across Sefton – including a trial where every other light on the A565 Formby bypass would be turned off.

Reducing council workers’ pay, saving £6m, which may involve axing staff and rehiring them on new contracts – a union-opposed move that could lead to industrial action.

Shutting day-care centres and “streamlining” the meals-on-wheels service among controversial measures designed to save £7.1m from social care services.

Hiking up pay and display charges by 30% – just two weeks after Liverpool council cut charges by 10% to boost trading. Free half-hour parking in Crosby village would be axed.

Other planned cuts include closing all public toilets, potentially shutting Crosby Civic Hall and cutting funding for cleansing teams which clear graffiti and fly-tipping.

Glen Williams, the secretary of Sefton’s Unison union, warned of possible strike action over changes to workers’ contracts. He said: “We don’t agree to any contractual changes, but we are happy to discuss non-contractual changes.”

Mr Williams said up to 200 jobs could be at risk under the proposed savings.

In a joint report, Sefton’s head of transformation services, Jan McMahon, and head of finance and ICT, Margaret Rawding, said: “This is a time of unprecedented change for the council and Sefton communities.”

Cabinet members will discuss the proposals on Thursday.

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