Rink plan is cold comfort

IN the middle of the snowiest, iciest winter for years, Barnsley Council is to shell out on an outdoor ICE RINK in the centre of the town!

As council staff prepare for hefty job losses and wage reductions across all departments, a sum of £1,500 plus is set to be spent on the mock rink, to be rigged up during a shopping Saturday this month.

Members of the Council’s central ward panel agreed to hire the mock ice rink at their meeting in November, with £1,500 from the Community Support Fund budget, plus an additional sum from the events budget.

The CEAG car park was touted as a location for the event, that was to be considered at the full council meeting today (January 6).

Meanwhile, discussion is expected at today’s meeting on proposed wage cuts for all workers to help reduce the number of planned redundancies.

The Unison union has expressed its concern after saying salaries across the board could be slashed by up to 20 per cent.

A union spokesman said the figure would not be acceptable, given the current high living costs people face on a day-to-day basis.

But council leader Steve Houghton has said all options continue to be considered as the council tries to save £40m over four years.

Well over 1,000 jobs are in peril, as the council seeks ways to cut budgets and meet new Government targets.