Like all councils across the country, North Somerset Council is seeing its budget squeezed by high inflation and an increasing demand for its services.
Councillors heard at last night’s meeting that next year’s 2023/24 budget gap now stands at £2.536m – which is a significant reduction from over £17m initially reported in November 2022 and reflects the work that has been done to combat budget pressures by continuing to challenge costs and increase income. The latest update includes additional savings proposals of £606k which will mean that total savings of at least £11m will be included within the budget plans for next year.
Cllr Ash Cartman, Executive Member for Corporate Services at North Somerset Council said: “I want to thank everyone for their continuing support as we have to make incredibly tough decisions in order to deliver a balanced budget at next month’s Council. We’ve made significant progress in reducing the budget gap reported last year and won’t stop until we’ve achieved our goal.”
Work will continue over the next month to prepare and approve a robust, balanced revenue budget for the 2023/34 financial year, along with relevant council tax bandings and rates.
The Government has recognised the significant financial challenges faced by councils and has increased the amount that councils can increase their council tax by. The new levels enable councils to set Council Tax at 3 per cent for general services (a 1 per cent increase from last year) and 2 percent increase in adult social care precept (a further 1 percent increase from last year).
A draft budget will be considered by the council’s Executive in February before being recommended to Council for approval later that month.
To read the full report, please click Committee Report NSC (moderngov.co.uk).