DEPUTY Leader and Cabinet Member for Finance, Councillor Aled Davies welcomed a funding increase that would allow the cabinet to protect and invest in frontline services for 2022-2023 and recommend a 3.9 percent council tax increase – around £1 per week for a Band D property – which is lower than the 5% originally planned.
“Despite the positive settlement we continue to face significant challenges from population changes, increased demand for our services, and expectations of our residents. Our costs are increasing significantly, so must plan carefully for the future,” he said.
“The additional funding also comes with some new responsibilities which add to the cost of delivering services to our residents.
“We have taken the opportunity to review and update our plans which have been developed as part of the overall strategic planning process alongside Vision 2025, the Council’s Corporate Improvement Plan.
“We will continue to face financial pressures that outweigh the funding provided and will continue to focus on improving efficiency and as far as possible protecting crucial front-line services from cuts whilst transforming and improving the quality of our services,” he added.
“The county council is in a sound financial position thanks to careful budget management, but we cannot be complacent and must maintain a prudent approach. This year’s settlement along with the recommendation to increase Council Tax by 3.9% will deliver significant investment in crucial services for our residents, pupils, and the most vulnerable in our communities.”
Additional investment in frontline services include; £5 million in Education £2.5 million in Highways Transport and Recycling and also a big increase of £9.2 million in Social Services.
“The Council also has an ambitious Capital programme of £88.5M for 2023/23 which has been significantly supported by UK Government – £10M next year and a further £10M over the following two years. From rechargeable road sweepers to new schools we will continue to invest in services which are important to Powys residents,” he added.