Councillors vote to cut funding to Devon’s school crossing patrols

Will schools lose their lollipops?

Will schools lose their lollipops? - Credit: Archant

Devon County Council’s share of the council tax will also be increased by 3.99 per cent following Thursday’s crunch budget meeting

Devon County Council has voted to cut funding to school crossing patrols and raise council tax by 3.99 per cent.

At a crunch budget meeting at County Hall today (Thursday) Conservative and UKIP councillors voted 36 in favour of the controversial proposals.

The council has decided to withdraw its £250,000 in funding of the school lollipop patrols, which it says is necessary due to receiving less money from central Government this year.

It means if schools want a crossing patrol they will have to pay for it themselves, with the council appointing a third party administrator to run the service.

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Despite impassioned pleas by independent and Liberal Democrat councillors, the ruling administration resolved to push ahead with the plans.

Speaking at the meeting, Fremington’s independent County Councillor Frank Biederman said it was not fair that the public were paying more for less and called on the other councillors to vote with their conscience.

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“Walk past the school crossing patrol next week knowing you used your vote to save it, feel proud to have put the people of Devon first,” he said.

“It’s time to put the people of Devon you promised in 2013 before your political masters put the people before a position on a cabinet, executive or a chairmanship of a committee, it is time to act independently for the people of Devon.”

Mr Biederman had proposed councillors accept a reduction in travel expenses from 45p to 40p, with the proceeds being spent to save the school crossing patrols, but this was rejected.

Check back for more reaction as we have it.

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