NOTE: This content is old - Published: Tuesday, Feb 14th, 2017.
Households in Flintshire will see a council tax increase of around 3% this year, as the authority looks to balance the books in the face of continued austerity measures.
Flintshire County Council cabinet committee agreed today to finalise its annual budget for 2017/18 with council chiefs agreeing to protect front-line services for another year.
The average band D council tax being paid by residents Flintshire was £1352 – a 3% rise would work out at around £40 per household next year.
[miptheme_quote author=”” style=”boxquote text-left”]Many local authorities across England and Wales are set to increase council tax by around 5% a new report says.
Research carried out by the Local Government Information Unit (LGiU) says 94% of those councils responding to their survey will implement an increase over the next financial year, with 5% increase being the average rise. [/miptheme_quote]
This year’s budget setting process has seen the council approved savings of £10.4m
Flintshire has pushed for increased investment in Social Care, following lobbying the Welsh Government announced extra funding of £10m across all councils to support the rising costs of domiciliary care in Wales, Flintshire expects to receive around £430,000.
The Welsh Government, in finalising its budgets for 2017/18, has recently confirmed that the charging cap limit for domiciliary care will be raised from £60 to £70 per week from 1 April 2017.
For Flintshire, this will mean that we can recover additional annual income of £230,000 from clients where they can afford to pay.
With the combined income from charging for domiciliary care and the share in the new grant, the remaining gap to be found had been reduced by £668,000 to £1.3m.
However, the Council has had to add an increase in the annual levy charged by the North Wales Fire and Rescue Authority to its budget target.
Flintshire will have to contribute a further £317,000 to the Fire and Rescue service a 4.52% rise.
The gap remaining in the budget stands at £1.6m, councillors have agreed to fund this through council reserves.
The Leader of the Council, Councillor Aaron Shotton, said:
With pressures upon local government budgets increasing year on year, the Council has been faced with an unprecedented challenge to continue in our mission to protect frontline services, whilst also seeking to provide a balanced budget, which we are legally duty bound to do.
Despite the fiscal challenge, I am pleased that we are proposing to increase schools funding by £1.2m.
Social care budgets will be both protected and increased by £3.265m to meet the double challenge’ of the rises in demand for services and the inflationary pressure care providers are facing to continue to provide critical care services across our County.
Chief Executive, Colin Everett, added:
We have again managed to protect key public services for another year and have avoided making big rises in the charges made for some services.