Budget to strengthen communities with no Council Tax Rise
Eden District Councillors are set to determine the Council's budget for 2018/19 on Thursday 15 February 2018, with the proposals before them including no Council Tax rise, no cuts to services and more funding to support the sustainability of local communities.
Eden District Councils Leader, Councillor Kevin Beaty, said: "The budget the Council's Executive is placing before Members for approval contains no rise in Council tax, it is about helping the pound in people's pocket go as far as it can. We have made savings on services and we propose passing these on to local communities to help sustain the services they value through grants to Parish and Town Councils.
"We recognise that the County Council and the Police and Crime Commissioner are having to place extra demands on Tax Payers this year, so if by carefully managing our finances we can help to reduce this cost to residents by not raising our share of Council Tax we will do it. We have an ambitious programme of work ahead which this budget seeks to support by funding more housing, providing economic support for businesses and grants for more community projects and events. I hope members recognise the good news in this budget proposal for local residents and give it their full support next Thursday.
Proposals included in the budget going before Full Council for determination on Thursday 15 February 2018, include:
- Providing better access to Council services through a digital transformation project;
- A new Â£300,000 fund to support services in local towns and parishes to benefit local residents and businesses;
- Supporting our ageing population through new initiatives such as Eden Active Fit 4 All
- Embedding in the annual budget the Eden Community Fund grant scheme of £110,000 a year for all the parishes and local communities to apply for grants to support local projects and events;
- Devolution of local services to Town and Parish Councils will continue to secure these valued services for the future, with funding support from Eden District Council to assist this happening until 2022;
- New renewable heating project spend of £150,000 to support renewable and local energy solutions;
- Investment in planning enforcement so that we have systems in place to secure full compliance with the planning policies and, through that, generating increased investment in development in appropriate places;
- Continue to support and improve alongside Town and Parish Councils footway lighting throughout the District by continued investment in this service;
- The commitment to provide loans to a Registered Social Landlord through the Affordable Housing Innovation Fund of a £1m will be realised by 31 March 2018.
The withdrawal of Council Special Expenses from 1 April 2018 (used previously to fund specific services in some parishes, such as grass cutting), could mean a Council Tax rise for some areas where Special Expenses were not charged. The District Council not raising its proportion of Council Tax will lessen this increase.