Couty borrowing is 'offset by assets'

PUBLISHED: 08:10 16 July 2008 | UPDATED: 22:04 15 June 2010

DEVON County Council has responded to claims that it is in debt.

DEVON County Council has responded to claims that it is in debt.Sarah Randall Johnson, leader of East Devon District Council, made the claim last week, after the Boundary Committee made a draft recommendation that a 'super council' be formed for Devon.The district council, along with others, would be scrapped to make way for the new, unitary authority.Brian Greenslade, leader of the county council, told the Herald: "The assertion that the county council is poor with money or in the red is absolute nonsense. "In fact, we are consistently praised by the Audit Commission for our prudent use of resources and, for the past 15 years, have brought the county's finances in under budget."The county council is currently responsible for 85 per cent of all public services in East Devon, including vital services like schools, roads and the care of the elderly. We are also responsible for investing in Devon's infrastructure to ensure our economy continues to grow, which can be clearly seen by all to the east of Exeter.Councillor Greenslade added: "Like any business or household, to pay for improvements we have to borrow. The county council does have a £600m programme of capital investment to fund new schools, road schemes, recycling centres and a lot more but, as our accounts clearly show, this is more than offset by our assets which total more than £1.6 billion.

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