Wolverhampton to shed 20 posts

Wolverhampton City Council has announced plans to cut around 20 jobs from its department responsible for planning, housing and regeneration.

According to council papers, the jobs will be axed from the division known as the "prosperity service", which currently has 277 staff.

A council document outlining savings to be made in the prosperity service said the cuts are "expected to be managed through deletion of vacant posts and voluntary redundancy.

"However, some compulsory redundancy may occur. There will be a period of consultation undertaken, and support will be available to all staff throughout the review process," it added.

The local authority estimates that the job cuts and alterations to service provision could save it £443,000 in 2012/13. A spokeswoman for the council said that it is not yet known exactly how many planning staff would be affected by the cuts.

Meanwhile, Southampton City Council's planning team will be affected by proposals to cut the equivalent of 108 full-time posts across the authority.

Paul Nichols, the council's head of planning, said that two vacant posts would no longer be filled.

The council said it is making the cuts to meet a funding shortfall of £15.2 million in 2012/13.

Last month, research published by charity the National Trust revealed that three-quarters of councils that responded to a data request had cut planning staff numbers over the past three years (Planning, 7 October, p17).

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