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Craven District Council

Craven District Council Budget 2020/21 is approved

Craven District Council has approved a fully funded and balanced Revenue Budget of £7,042,116 for 2020/21.

Councillors approved an increase of council tax at Band D by £5 a year to £177.21, or £3.41 per week - an increase of just under 10p per week.

Council tax was frozen in Craven for five years in a row but has been increased by £5 a year in each of the last four budgets, as the Government has removed the Council Tax Freeze Grant and reduced the Revenue Support Grant down to zero from April 2019.

Councillor Richard Foster, Leader of the Council said: “We are proud to provide a range of excellent services for our residents, for just £3.41 per week for the average household.

“Your £3.41 per week helps us collect your bins, clean your streets, run community events and provide a vast number of other services including environmental health, housing and homelessness support, planning and economic development. It helps us run Craven Leisure, as well as Skipton Town Hall and Craven Museum & Gallery, which are currently undergoing exciting renovations to create a cultural hub for the whole district.

“We’re pleased that in our Budget consultation last autumn we had a record number of respondents and the majority showed strong support for our priorities.

“We acknowledge that a number of people do not wish to see an increase of £5 in council tax. However, we feel the best option to maintain services within Craven is to increase council tax by this small amount, which is less than 10p a week for the average household.

“We will continue to maintain and develop services and create ambitious plans for the future, while also cutting costs and increasing income wherever possible. Over the last year we have so far identified savings and additional income totalling £256,000 that will help to deliver next year’s budget.

“We have further challenges in the future – our medium term financial strategy estimates that we will need to save £1.16 million by 2023/24. All councils are under huge pressures due to the reduction of grant support from central government, so we are proud to have put forward a robust and balanced budget.

“To avoid cuts to services, we will also use £225,000 of the New Homes Bonus in 2020/21, to support the budget in the short term, in addition to £137,000 for already approved projects.”

The proposed budget will be funded by the council’s projected revenues and a contribution from the council’s reserves. The council will maintain a General Fund Balance of £995,000 for unforeseen outgoings.

Craven District Council’s element of the Council Tax bill makes up around nine per cent of the total. In 2020/21 this will equate to £3.41 per week for district council services for an average Band D property.

Other authorities (the county council, police, fire service and parishes) set their own rates for their proportion and this is collected on their behalf by Craven District Council.

A total of 70 per cent of the council tax bill goes to North Yorkshire County Council, 14 per cent goes to the North Yorkshire Police & Crime Commissioner, four per cent goes to North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Services, three per cent goes to parish councils, and nine per cent goes to Craven District Council.