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A Lichfield councillor says the local authority must be ready to support people if jobs are axed once the furlough scheme ends.

The Government’s scheme to fund part of the payment for workers during the coronavirus crisis is due to be phased out in the coming months.

Cllr Rob Strachan, cabinet member for finance, procurement, customer services and revenues and benefits, was speaking at a meeting of Lichfield District Council’s cabinet.

Cllr Rob Strachan

He warned that the scale of the impact of COVID-19 on the local authority’s finances was still to be fully understood.

“The acid test will be as the furlough scheme is reduced and more people return to work – or potentially don’t.

“We must be aware and prepared for that, and be able to support them in any way we can.”

Cllr Rob Strachan, Lichfield District Council

The cabinet were debating a report which has modelled various scenarios based on a drop in revenue for the council going forward.

The worst case would see the local authority take a £4.5million financial hit.

But the meeting was told that the early indications were that Lichfield District Council was currently seeing figures nearer to the best of the three scenarios which would mean a £1.28million hit on its finances.

Deputy leader Cllr Iain Eadie said:

“It is pleasing to see that at the moment we look like it’s scenario A – which is the least severe impact of what has been set out.”

Cllr Iain Eadie, Lichfield District Council

Ross

Founder of Lichfield Live and editor of the site.

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