Some local authorities may be forced to declare technical insolvency in the next two years, experts have said, as councils struggle to weather the financial pressures caused by budget cuts and growing demand for social care, the Guardian reports.
A survey of councils in England and Wales by the Local Government Information Unit (LGIU) thinktank found that three-quarters had little or no confidence in the sustainability of local government finances and more than one in 10 believed they were in danger of failing to meet legal requirements to deliver core services.
The nervousness about finances was even more pronounced among councils with responsibility for delivering social care. They were much more likely to state that the financial squeeze would see a deterioration in the quality of services this year and that cuts would put them in breach of their statutory duties.
More than 40% of all councils anticipated making “cuts in frontline services, which will be evident to the public” – rising to 71% among social care authorities. More than half considered adult social care to be the most pressing issue, a figure that increases to 80% among social care authorities.