Councillors have agreed spending on services for the year ahead as part of a budget setting process which seeks to transform service delivery and with a strong focus on investment led recovery.
At a Special Council Meeting today (4th March) councillors approved a revenue budget of £141.362 million to spend on services in 2022/2023. The capital budget for 2022/23 onwards follows on from the significant work last year to develop a 20 year (£255m) rolling programme that marked a significant change in the Council's approach to its capital investment. The capital investment programme includes:
The Council also agreed increases in council tax and some service charges. Council tax will rise by 3%, an increase of £39.14 a year for a Band D property. While some fees and charges will increase by 5.4% in line with inflation.
A total of £4.5m is included in the budget to cover inflationary increases in the Council’s costs.
The meeting agreed that the £150 Cost of Living Award for households in council tax bands A to D and those in receipt of council tax reduction in bands E to H will be allocated to council tax accounts and deducted from annual bills across the year.
While tough decisions have had to be made as part of the 2022/23 budget setting process, this budget aims to minimise the impacts on the delivery of vital services to our residents and communities.
Council Leader Ellen Forson said: “This budget has been set amidst a backdrop of steeply rising inflation and the impact of the pandemic, which has created unprecedented financial pressures. We've looked to minimise impacts on our communities, whilst our transformation programme has a strong focus on an investment led recovery, using our spending power to stimulate local economic recovery.”