Commenting on the Comprehensive Spending Review, Cllr Colin Barrow, leader of Westminster Council, said: "We were never in any doubt as to how far-reaching the cuts would be given the dire financial situation the country is in. Local government is at the frontline of these cuts, as councils are responsible for many of the services that are affected.
"Previous levels of spending are unsustainable, and like it or not, we simply cannot afford to do all the things we used to. This means that we will have to prioritise the services that we deliver. To do this we have to rethink how we operate. This is about a new relationship between the State and the citizen.
"There will be a period of rationalising public services and as a council will have to make choices about the services we provide. But we are confident we can still protect the most vulnerable, become more efficient, and release the potential of our citizens to improve their local quality of life by developing a stronger sense of community responsibility.
"The council has already earmarked £54million worth of savings over the next three years and is set to merge its children's services department with neighbouring Hammersmith and Fulham to save a further £2.5m a year for each authority. We are also working towards broadening and deepening our joint working with Kensington and Chelsea and Wandsworth councils.
“None of us want to cut front-line services, but if councils pool their resources and expertise and bring the public sector together under one roof people really can get more for less from local government. We see it as an opportunity to transform the way we work.
“For example, by merging health with social care, linking crime prevention with offender management and bringing together local employers with benefits we can continue to provide high quality local services while delivering savings to local taxpayers."