Faced with more cuts, “we’re close to the absolute limit,” says Lincolnshire County Council leader Martin Hill

Lincolnshire County Council leader Martin Hill started a campaign to get more funding for the authority with a stark warning that local services are approaching breaking point.

The Conservative leader of the council was re-elected in May with a landslide majority of councillors and previously told Lincolnshire Reporter his biggest project now is to secure a better funding deal for Lincolnshire.

As well as meeting with the seven Lincolnshire MPs (six Conservative, one Labour), Martin Hill said he will be making the case for fairer funding directly to the government over the coming months.

Martin Hill, said in a statement on Monday: “Councils in Lincolnshire receive just £292 per resident to provide a vast range of services they need. London boroughs receive £536 per resident. This means we have far less to provide services that our residents need.

“On top of this, we face additional costs compared to urban areas, of maintaining such a large road network, and providing services such as adult care where people are spread over a large geographical area.

“This ‘double whammy’ effect means that we have depleting funds to repair potholes, care for our elderly population and provide fire and rescue services, to name a few.

“We have already changed how we do things and made cuts to service budgets. In fact our annual spending has reduced by £288m since 2011, but I believe we’re now close to the absolute limit.

“Something has to change and we’re simply asking for a level playing field, for a fairer deal for Lincolnshire.”

“By 2020, the main government grant to the county council will have fallen by 86% over a decade. Increasing costs including those from the National Living Wage, inflation and waste disposal charges, are making balancing the council’s budget more and more challenging.”