Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The last council related meeting of 2008 was this morning, looking at progress on the various scrutinies that are taking place as well as a brief discussion of some of the pressures that are looming on the council's budget in the next couple of years. When people think about the credit crunch they perhaps don't realise the impact it might have on council services. Fewer planning applications means lower income from the fees, but we still have to maintain the planning service. General belt tightening means fewer people bringing cars into town and paying parking fees, but we still have to maintain the car parks. More importantly and much more sadly, worries about jobs and household income mean more stress in families, more demand for help with housing, more family breakdown, more children needing foster homes, more health problems. These aren't things that worry most people until they're personally affected, but they are very real effects of the economic problems in the country. And they have to be dealt with by the council, the health professionals etc without any increase in funds.
All isn't doom and gloom, though. The sun shone for a goodly part of the day, the washing dried out on the line and I found the Christmas present I'd hidden almost too well. On top of that the skips were removed from the open space in front of 661 Yarm Rd and the pedestrian route between Stoney Bank and Yarm Bridge was cleared in time for Christmas.
So now the Christmas dinner ingredients are all safely bought, presents are wrapped and all that remains is to take down birthday cards and put up Christmas cards.
A very happy Christmas to one and all and my best wishes for Peace in 2009.

No comments: