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County Council tax share at maximum to pay for social care

Council plan to invest in Norfolk's future.
Council plan to invest in Norfolk's future.

Norfolk County Council has approved a £388 million budget for 2018/19.

Councillors backed the plans by 47 votes to 23 at a full council meeting on Monday.

The budget will mean its share of the council tax will rise to 5.99 per cent - the maximum it can take.

But there will be increased and faster investment in adults and children’s social care services as a result.

The full council heard that another £94.7 million in savings must still be found over the next four years.

“This budget shows we are determined to care for the county and to invest in Norfolk’s future,” said council leader Cliff Jordan.

“We are continuing to care for the most vulnerable people.

“The council is investing £34 million in adult social care over the coming year, plus £13 million in children’s services.”

The council tax share means someone living in a band D property will pay an extra £74.79 a year.

The budget includes £4.6 million to fund pay inflation, including the nationally proposed two per cent pay rise for staff.

The total budget includes £252.4 million for adult social services, £186 million for children’s services, £103 million for environment, development and transport, £46.9 million for communities, £8 million for business and property and £13.2 million for digital innovation.

The 5.99 per cent council tax hike comes after the council decided to levy the Government’s adult social care precept in two annual amounts of three per cent, instead of three annual amounts of two per cent, to secure quicker investment.

Deputy leader Alison Thomas said: “By being prudent, we’ve been able to invest in services for the most vulnerable people, despite the continued reduction of our government grant, rising costs and growing demand for services.

“We have agreed to take the maximum council tax level permitted by the Government – 2.99 per cent for general services and 3 per cent for adult social care - to ease these pressures.”

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