RESIDENTS can take the challenge of balancing the council's books by using an online budget simulator.

The tool, called ‘You Choose’, allows people to decide where they think money should be invested or cut.

Using the simulator helps residents understand the tough decisions taken by council members.

St Helens Council’s Cabinet Member for Finance and Corporate Services, Cllr Jeff Fletcher, said: “This simulator can only give you a general idea of the very difficult choices we have to make and the huge range of services we provide to everyone.

"It is not difficult to use and I would encourage as many residents as possible to take this opportunity to tell the council which services are of greatest importance to them, as well as submitting any other ideas they may have on how we make savings."

Views will be taken into account as part of the budget setting consultation process for 2015-16. ‘You Choose’ will be available on the council website at until November 30.

To comment log on to or call Ian Roberts on 01744 676789.