Norfolk County Council confirms 3.99 per cent precept rise
Norfolk County Council has confirmed a precept rise of 3.99 per cent.
It is the first time it has risen for five years and means a Band ‘D’ property will pay £1,190.79, an annual increase of £45.72 or 88p per week.
A spokesperson said the budget “invests in the future” and “protects a range of key council services.”
75 members voted in favour of the budget, with four against and two abstentions. The new precept figure includes a 2 per cent adult social care precept proposed by the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with a further 1.99 per cent to fund the recommendations of service committees.
The County Council will save almost £42 million next year, largely savings made by the back office. Even with a rise in council tax, the council still expects to have to make savings of over £100 million over the next three years.
Norfolk County Council Leader George Nobbs said it was a “remarkable achievement” that “proved the doubters wrong”.
Unlike many councils in the country, Norfolk will not be closing a single children’s centre, will not be closing a single library and will not be closing a single fire station
“Unlike many councils in the country, Norfolk will not be closing a single children’s centre, will not be closing a single library and will not be closing a single fire station,” he said. “Despite the continuing reduction in central government support, we have a budget that invests in key services, produces a surplus by 2019 and sees this council spend a record amount – more than ever before – on adult social care.
“This budget represents a triumph for collaborative working over months of difficult decision making. It is an illustration of what can be done when we all agree put the people of Norfolk first.”
He added that the council had listened carefully to the views of the public, saying reductions in the amount the council will spend on adult social care transport taken off the table. Further reductions to the council’s Supporting People budget had been avoided as has the option of further savings in youth services.
Dan Roper, Deputy Leader of Norfolk County Council added: “This budget provides real stability for Norfolk’s finances and gives the public certainty that front-line services will be protected well into the future.
“Decisions still have to be made on how to allocate £4.6m of one-off funding announced by the Government for 2016/17, however, there are three clear rules: the money will be spent in the new financial year, any spending must be sustainable and this leads to the conclusion that invest to save initiatives must be paramount.”