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Powys launches war on red tape

Created on 12/08/2011 @ 16:36
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Powys County Council has introduced a range of new services in its bid to save jobs and money while at the same time improve turnaround times for frontline services.
Mywelshpool understands that under new measures to be introduced on September 1, staff will work a set number of hours over a seven-day week with no extra pay if those hours fall on a weekend.
It is also believed that the council will be divided up into sub-zones with local managers handed more powers to take quick decisions in solving problems. Previously, they were slowed down by paperwork and the need for central management approvals. This could particularly improve the response time to jobs like fixing pot holes.
The moves are believed to have been met by a mixed response from employees but negotiations have been held with trade unions who have accepted that the alternative was job losses.
Cabinet Member for Local Services, Councillor Geraint Hopkins said: “We have been in detailed consultation with staff and trade unions looking at ways to maintain existing service levels and protect jobs at a time when funding is being cut. Staff and trade unions have accepted our proposals and we will be introducing new flexible working arrangements from the start of next month.

“This is an exciting time for the council and our new local area management approach shows that we are able to respond to challenge and make fundamental changes to modernise our services.”

Councillor Hopkins said the changes would concentrate activity on core local services such as refuse, recycling and collection, street cleansing, grounds and highways maintenance and would retain the council’s ability to respond to urgent issues like road accidents and winter maintenance.

“The changes will challenge some of the council’s traditional ways of working but we need to modernise our services if we are to reduce overall running costs and provide employment,” he added.”
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