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We'll use public's cuts ideas - PM

David Cameron has insisted the coalition will use the public's ideas for cutting spending as it seeks to tackle the deficit.

The Prime Minister revealed the Government had received 67,000 suggestions from state employees for how savings could be made since an engagement initiative was launched last month.

He highlighted two proposals which would be implemented - saying the rules on criminal records checks would be eased for NHS workers, and people who had visa applications refused would have to contribute to appeal costs.

Speaking at a question and answer session with members of the public in Hove, Mr Cameron said the UK was borrowing more than Greece this year, and action had to be taken.

"I want to make sure we take as many people in our country with us as we do that," he insisted.

"That's why we issued this Spending Challenge. We have had 67,000 emails with ideas and letters from people within the public sector coming up with some great ideas.

"Some big ideas, sometimes quite small ideas, but great ideas for how we save money. For example, if you work in the health service, every time you go to a different hospital you have to have a new criminal records bureau (CRB) check. Why?"

Mr Cameron went on: "Someone else working in the immigration system said it is mad that when people appeal against a visa decision, even though that appeal may cost £10,000, that appeal is entirely free. Something else we can change."

The Government launched its Spending Challenge in a bid to encourage people to think more about public services and how they are provided.

The best suggestions will be considered as part of the Government's spending review, to be concluded on October 20. This will set out the Government's spending plans for the years 2011-12 to 2014-15. The coalition is committed to a "significant acceleration" in the reduction of Britain's budget deficit over the course of this parliament.


From Belfast Telegraph