County council ask residents’ views on managing accounts

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A new survey launched by West Sussex County Council is asking residents’ views on managing council finances and where they think resource should be focused.

Called ‘Every Pound Counts’, the survey asks residents and businesses for their opinion on how public money is used.

It includes a section where people have the chance to be ‘chancellor for the day’ by allocating points – representing sums of money – to different areas.

Leader of the county council Louise Goldsmith said: “Some people may well be surprised to see the range of services provided by the county council, from social care to highways, and waste management to safeguarding.

“It’s no secret that we are in the middle of very difficult financial times. The county council is part-way through a three-year programme to save £79 million. We need to live within our means as a local authority and provide value for money for our residents and businesses.

“Equally, we need to make sure we focus our limited resources on the things that matter most to residents. This consultation is a chance for people to show us where they would like the Council’s resources focussed, and also where they would like savings to be made.”

The results of the survey last year showed that residents wanted roads maintenance as a priority. The county council has given additional funding and recently announced a £3 million countywide road maintenance programme for road surface dressing.

Budget management and being transparent and accountable were also highlighted. The ‘Performance Framework 2011 – 2014’ has a commitment to produce and publish data for residents to hold the county council to account, and more data is openly available on the County Council’s website.

Details of the survey can be found at Libraries and Help Points or by visiting the county council website at www.westsussex.gov.uk/everypoundcounts where people can either fill in the survey online or download a copy.

People can also request a paper copy of the survey by calling the county council on 01243 777100.

People have until Sunday September 9 to take part.