AGENCY staff will be needed to cover long-term sickness and child protection vacancies in Calderdale.

And while a similar move last year is estimated to have cost around £195,000, there’s now no budget to cover such costs, a report has revealed.

Councillors on the Use of Resources Scrutiny Panel are expected to be told that the chief executive’s and deputy chief executive’s Office underspent by £50,226 in 2010/11.

But it represents just 0.28% from the total net service controlled budget of £17,909,187.

And concerns about the budget for the current financial year have been raised.

The report says: “Within the Democratic and Partnership Services Service there remain issues in relation to the coming year. While expenditure on staff salaries is expected to be broadly in line with current budgets, it is anticipated that it will be necessary to use agency staff for a significant part of the year in order to cover for long term sickness and vacancies in relation to child protection work, for which there is no budget.”

Democratic and Partnership Services overspent by £159,599.

The department, which oversees legal and provides administrative support to the council’s decision-making committees, has put the overspend on staffing costs. The cost of agency staff for the year within legal was approximately £195,000, for which there was no budget.

Later today councillors will discuss the report and find ways to resolve the situation.