News » County Councillor Report December 2015
|County Councillor Report December 2015 10 December, 2015|
David Sprason’s Parish Report.
County Council Budget
Following the chancellors autumn budget statement local government has taken the brunt of his funding cuts. Local government will see its grant cut by a further 29% this will mean local government will have seen its grant reduced by 79% by 2020. Transport is the other big looser as this budget will have been cut by 70% if you take out the cost of HS2 the impact is huge. The only 3 departments that will see an increase are Health (not public health) +10%, Cabinet office +18% and International development (Foreign Aid) +39%.
This will require the County Council to increase its savings requirement from £80 million to £120 million. The impact on the highways & transport department is yet to be understood. The areas that are likely to be subject to cuts are highways maintenance, rural transport, children’s centres, library service, youth services, waste sites and the support to the voluntary sector. The other area that has had a reduction in its grant is the NHS public health service. The impacts of these reductions are yet to be realized but it is likely that some prevention services will go. The chancellor recognised that the gap in funding social care is growing and shifted the funding to local council taxpayers with a 2% ring fenced increase. Should LCC accept this your council tax will rise by 4% next year. well above inflation.
The chancellor also announced that government support grant will disappear by 2020 and local councils will be able to retain business rates. It is unclear at this stage how this will work and local government are waiting for further details.
I am afraid that if we thought things were bad now for local government they are likely to get a lot worse over the next five years. Although it is not good news I will still wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
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