Council to cut wage bill

NEWTOWNABBEY Borough Council has announced a voluntary severance scheme as a way of reducing future payroll costs.

The move follows consultation with elected members, staff and trade unions.

This has come about because like many other public sector organisations, the council is facing economic pressures and has been looking at ways to cut costs. The redundancies will result in savings of over 3m over a five year period.

Mayor of Newtownabbey, Alderman Paula Bradley explained: "Employee costs are one of our highest areas of spend. The bottom line is that we need to make savings while maintaining service delivery levels. We have had to consider the most sensible options possible to reduce our costs and this has included reviewing staffing levels."

Council Chief Executive, Jacqui Dixon, added: "We have initiated various internal reviews of our services to help us to plan the overall future and direction of the council."