Hampshire County Council is continuing its office rationalisation and now aims to add a further £1.3 million saving, by freeing up more office space in its buildings and sharing locations with other public sector partners – ploughing these savings back into the delivery of public services to the people of Hampshire.
Leader of the County Council, Councillor Roy Perry, said: “The County Council’s ongoing financial challenges are well documented, and it’s right that we continue to explore every avenue to help balance the budget. We have undertaken significant office rationalisation in previous years, and work is ongoing to ensure we continue to use our remaining buildings as efficiently as possible and generate income from existing assets – an approach residents have told us they support. Freeing up more office space for other organisations to use - particularly public sector partners, not only creates new opportunities for the County Council to generate income, it can also help our public sector partners reduce their running costs, as well to deliver further savings to taxpayers. We much prefer to do this than make reductions in front line service delivery.”
The County Council has already saved around £2 million from reducing office space by around 25%, and making existing buildings more efficient. The letting of surplus office space to third parties is an extension of current successful practice. One recent example has seen the leasing of a small number of workstations in the County Council’s Winchester headquarters building, to NHS staff working for the Hampshire Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) Partnership.
Maggie Maclsaac, Chief Executive of the Hampshire CCG Partnership, said: “It is important that health services and local authorities work closely together to ensure residents receive the best possible services. Working alongside our colleagues in social care, public health and education, has started to reap real benefits.
“For us, leasing office space from the County Council is also more economical than renting from the private sector, ensuring cost-savings which can be invested back into local services.”