Councillors have today set the City Council’s budget for the next financial year, making £27m of savings in response to Government funding cuts.
Since 2010 the council has seen its Government grant fall by £130m and has made £200m in savings. It has been hit harder than most by Government cuts, with people in Nottingham losing £71 per household while in Rutland for example, people are gaining £44.
To keep services running, councillors at today’s Full Council meeting agreed a range of changes to services, a reduction in the workforce and an overall Council Tax increase of 4.99%. Three percent of this increase is the Government’s precept to contribute to the Adult Social Care shortfall, which will raise £2.9m – not enough to meet the cost of around £10m the city needs to care just for the extra number of elderly and disabled people requiring services each year.
The council is aiming to stave off significant service impacts by bringing in extra income through running more services on a commercial basis, more efficiently and in a different way. Some of the key savings to balance the 2017/18 budget include introducing a fare on Centrelink and Medilink bus services, reviewing on-street parking charges, introducing a charge for non-domestic use of the Household Waste Service and reducing cultural grants.
Once again, the council has aimed to protect key services such as children’s centres, tackling crime and anti-social behaviour, keeping Nottingham as the UK’s cleanest city and protecting children and supporting vulnerable elderly people.
Nottingham City Council’s Deputy Leader, Councillor Graham Chapman, said: “This Government is placing the burden on the residents and businesses of Nottingham to pick up the bill for local services, while taking away more funds from Nottingham than many richer parts of the country.
“Areas like Nottingham raise less through Council Tax and yet demand for care services is greater. The Government’s Council Tax precept for adult social care won’t be enough to meet demand. Not only that but because adult social care accounts for a third of our total budget, it squeezes funds even further for other services.”