EAST Sussex County Council is to consult on plans to reduce its adult social care budget by almost £1million by 2020/21.

Carl Maynard, cabinet member for adult social care, agreed to launch consultations on plans to cut a subsidy for meals on wheels users and to make wider changes to how the council supports working age adults.

According to council papers, the meals on wheels subsidy it proposes cutting – which sees the council pay part of the cost of each meal delivered to East Sussex residents – was budgeted for around £500,000 last year.

During a council meeting concerns were raised over what cutting the subsidy – set at £4.10 per person, per meal – would mean for the around 750 people receiving it.

Liberal Democrat councillor John Ungar said: “For many people it provides a safety call. A check someone is fine. A check that they are healthy, haven’t got any urgent need they are unable to address.

“The meals on wheels provider is able to contact adult social care to alert them.”

Cllr Ungar also raised concerns that the proposals would end up costing the council more in the long run as social workers and carers picked up the shortfall in care.

He also said it would have a disproportionate impact on women, as they make up the majority of those receiving the subsidy.

The consultation on cutting the meals on wheels subsidy is expected to run from May 28 to August 6.

Meanwhile the consultation on changes to the support for working age adults is expected to run from June 4 to August 13.