COUNCIL chiefs have agreed a below inflation rise in the district share of council tax.
They were able to maintain “a relatively low level of council tax” as a result of years of “prudent financial management” which has seen reserves of around £9million built up.
It means from April a band D household will pay just over £137 to the district council – a rise of one per cent, or just under 3p per week.
Services provided by the district council – including waste collection, planning, street cleaning, housing, housing benefits, leisure services and children’s play areas – will cost £2.64 a week for a band D household.
The district council’s share of the total bill equates to around ten per cent. The lion’s share of 80 per cent is taken by Warwickshire County Council which has agreed an inflation-busting 4.99 per cent hike which will cost band D households around £50 more next year. Warwickshire Police, which also accounts for around ten per cent, has agreed a 6.25 per cent hike.
The district’s budget also agreed cash to help tackle homelessness, including £162,000 for B&B provision and £56,000 to prevent homelessness including additional funding for the Citizens Advice Bureau.
A further £100,000 was agreed to drawn up an economic development strategy and £78,000 to develop planning policy.
And £50,000 will be spent on preparations for a compulsory purchase order for Priory Square in Studley – a Lib-Dem proposal; £50,000 on investigations into providing broadband for hard to reach areas in the district; £37,0000 on extra security measures at public events; and £25,000 for the celebration of the centenary of the First World War armistice in November.
Chris Saint, leader of the Conservative-controlled council, said: “This budget represents a responsible way forward without compromising the future income to the council or putting forward profligate spending plans.
“Our important services are protected, maintaining the quality expected of us, and our spending is responding to the priorities supported by residents.
“Our reserves have been built up over a number of years within the financial strategy and reflect our prudent and sound financial management, in anticipation of the challenging times ahead when all future central government funding will cease.”