Council agrees budget for 2021/22
Friday, 26 February 2021
Central Bedfordshire’s Council has agreed its annual budget, which confirms a range of service investments, infrastructure projects and efficiency measures for the financial year ahead.
The budget also includes the application of an Adult Social Care Precept, which will see a 3% increase in Council Tax specifically to fund adult care services and an increase of 1.95% to contribute towards funding other pressures, for example in Children’s Services.
In recommending the budget proposals to the meeting of the full Council, the Executive Member for Corporate Resources, Councillor David Shelvey, explained:
The increase in council tax is not a decision we take lightly but even with the £10.7million of efficiencies planned for next year we still have a large gap in funding that otherwise could have resulted in service cuts. We must protect our services, particularly to the vulnerable. Adult Social Care is underfunded and with increasing demands on this service because we are living longer and with more complex needs, this means we have a budget gap of approximately £5millon. The 3% increase in the Adult Social Care Precept helps to bridge this gap. The 1.95% increase in council tax will offset pressures in other services, for example vulnerable children. This will allow for substantial investment in services for children with Special Educational Needs or Disability (SEND) and children in care.
We are also investing in the future by committing £128million next year on a range of building and infrastructure initiatives including building new care homes in Leighton Buzzard and Flitwick, an Integrated Health and Care Hub in Dunstable, expanding and transforming schools like Sandy Secondary School and road maintenance and progressing the Arlesey relief road.
The Council also agreed to focus on economic recovery to support job creation to help residents recover from the financial effects of the pandemic.
Our Council Tax support scheme is available for residents who may struggle to pay their Council Tax.
More detail on the budget will be issued to all Central Bedfordshire households with information on Council Tax levels, during March.