The council leader has said “the system is broken” after announcing a campaign calling for a fairer funding deal for local authorities.

Cllr Eamonn O’Brien says insufficient funding, inflation, and increased demand for public services has left the council struggling to balance its books.

The council is now calling on local residents, businesses and voluntary groups to get behind a campaign for a fairer funding deal for Bury.

Cllr O’Brien said: “These are hard times for councils, and Bury is no exception.

“We are facing a triple whammy - insufficient funding, huge increases in costs and inflation, and ever-increasing demand for services.

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“This is particularly serious in adults’ and children’s social care, which together take up three quarters of the council’s budget.

“We can no longer close the funding gap by reducing costs, making efficiencies or raising council tax. Sooner or later, something must give.

“The system is broken, and it’s having a major impact on the people of Bury. That’s why we have to fix it.

“We are running on fumes – we must have a fairer funding deal to keep vital services going.”

The council says Bury is in the bottom 20 per cent worst-funded councils – ranking 122 out of 150 upper-tier English local authorities in terms of money to spend per resident.

In Camden, the council has £1,331 to spend on every resident – in Bury it is £792.

It added that it’s annual real term core spending power has been reduced by 29 per cent since 2010/11. During this time government funding has gone down by 55 per cent.

The council said it has been forced to find £150m in saving since 2010/11 due to government funding cuts and unfunded pressures such as inflation and increased demand.

The council is asking everyone in Bury to sign the petition calling for a better deal for Bury. 

Cllr O’Brien said: “In recent years, we’ve used reserves to shore up the budget and keep services going.

“But we now face the prospect of having to make severe cutbacks to local services. This would not only damage our borough but would also massively undermine our ambitions to boost economic growth, reduce deprivation and help residents through the cost-of-living crisis.

“To continue to provide local services we all rely on, we need adequate funding, in line with inflation and the demand for services.

“We still have major ambitions for Bury, to make our borough prosper for decades to come. That’s why we’re putting unprecedented investment into regeneration programmes in Bury, Radcliffe and Prestwich.

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“But this is long-term capital investment. What we are really short of is money to run the everyday services that people need – looking after the sick and elderly and safeguarding our children, emptying the bins and running leisure centres.

“We will do everything to can to keep those services going, but this will involve some very tough decisions. But we need to make it clear how serious the situation is.

“We’re calling for the long-awaited government review of council funding to redress the balance for our borough and generations to come.”

The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities has been approached for a comment about the council leader's concerns.