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Councillor’s call for change in social care funding for Pembrokeshire

HOW adult and children’s care is funded must be looked at on a national basis a councillor has urged as a debate about council tax and budget gaps was held.

A budget monitoring report and Medium Term Financial Plan details were brought to corporate overview and scrutiny committee on Thursday, April 22 with a predicted funding gap in coming years of £61million.

Pembrokeshire County Councillor Michael Williams said that how social services are funded needs to change “or lives will be at risk.”

The committee agreed that funding models had been on the national government agenda for many years but not change and its impact locally would be the focus of further work by the social care overview and scrutiny committee.

Members considered writing to Werlsh and UK Governemnt about their concerns but resolved to send it to the relevant scrutiny committee first.

Council leader Cllr David Simpson reminded the committee of the bid to introduce a lower council tax than previously put forward by cabinet and this has an impact on funding services.

“Where do we get the money from to provide for services that are stretched? We are aware of the problems but when it comes to setting the budget you have to work with us sometimes,” he said.

Cabinet member for finance Cllr Bob Kilmister told the committee that the council had claimed £10.4million of additional expenditure and £5.5million of lost income from Welsh Government due to covid-19 and £12.4million had been paid.

There was £0.7million disallowed, for some IT spending and expertise brought in the committee heard, with a further £2.4million payment pending and £0.4million on hold for further information.

There is a projected underspend of £0.4million at the end of quarter three but further cost savings and efficiencies are required across departments, the committee heard.

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