Leader's Council Tax Speech 2015
At the Council meeting on 26 February, the Leader made a speech regarding the Council's budget.
Madam Mayor - In this, the 800th year of the sealing of the first Magna Carta, I have great pleasure in presenting the Budget Report for the Municipal Year 2015-16, which is designed to continue to provide the services to our residents which they both expect and deserve.
Like most of the UK public sector and particularly local government, this Council is facing a challenging financial future. We have had yet another £600,000 reduction in revenue support grant funding for 2015-16 (following on from a similar reduction for 2014-15).
Regardless of the outcome of the General Election we believe we face very serious funding cuts over the next few years and that we need to be preparing to become a self-funding council by 2020 at the latest. This is why we have put in place the Towards a Sustainable Future programme. Local government is facing its most difficult period in living memory.
The Towards a Sustainable Future is an ambitious but necessary programme covering a number of elements including:
- maximising income from assets both in the form of capital receipts where appropriate which can be reinvested - Bridge Street being an excellent example or generating revenue income streams
- being prepared to make strategic asset acquisitions if they will deliver an appropriate investment return for the Council
- relocating the Council offices to a smaller more efficient location and freeing up Knowle Green to increase housing supply for the Borough and provide an ongoing rental income stream for the Council
- restructuring the Council's management structure to make efficiencies and create better service synergies
- redesigning services to deliver savings including new innovative delivery models.
In order to deliver the foregoing it is necessary that appropriate upfront resources are provided....
To read the full speech click here