Craven District Council’s 2021/22 Budget is approved by Policy Committee
Craven District Council’s Policy Committee has approved a fully funded and balanced Revenue Budget of £7,132,749 for 2021/22.
The Budget will need to be confirmed by full Council at a meeting on February 23.
The Policy Committee approved an increase of council tax at Band D by £5 a year to £182.21, or £3.50 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 five 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 £3.50 per week for the average household.
“This last year has been challenging for everyone, including local councils, but we have continued to collect your bins, clean your streets, support our communities and provide a huge range of other services including environmental health, housing and homelessness support and planning.
“We have continued to progress exciting new developments such as the renovations to Skipton Town Hall and Craven Museum, and a number of projects to improve connectivity and economic prospects around the district.
“The flexibility of our staff in working through the pandemic and taking on additional or different tasks has helped us to deliver these services to our residents and businesses.
“We’re pleased that in our Budget consultation last autumn we had over 200 respondents and the majority showed strong support for our priorities.
“We know that a number of people do not wish to see an increase of £5 in council tax. However, this is the best option in order to maintain services within Craven, and amounts to less than 10p a week for the average household.
“An overspend of £222,000 for 2020/21 has been forecast, based on the Quarter 2 budget monitoring report in December 2020. This recognises the impact of Covid-19 in an extraordinary year. However, during the year the council moved from estimating a significant financial shortfall early on, to a more stable position. The financial impact of the pandemic is likely to be long-lasting, although hopefully less drastic than over the last year.
“We will continue to maintain and develop services and create ambitious plans for the future, while also increasing income and cutting costs wherever possible.
“We know there will be significant challenges ahead, and the full financial impact of Covid-19 has yet to be fully calculated. However, we are pleased to have put forward a robust and balanced budget for the next year.”
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 2021/22 this will equate to £3.50 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.