Budget updates

also known as: Council budgets.

This page contains the latest information about the 2015/16 - 2016/17 proposed budget.

Budget process gets underway

Read our budget guide here

The policy board at Northumberland County Council has now approved recommendations to consult on a set of proposals on the budget.

Investments

The draft proposals include ambitious plans for more than £350m of capital investment in local projects, including providing more homes, jobs, better education and improved transport infrastructure.

Budget discussions are underway on plans to save £44million up to 2017, while at the same time investing in the future.

These investments include:

  • building new social housing
  • funding towards a scheme to reopen the Ashington, Blyth and Tyne railway line
  • investments in improved education, including the complete rebuild of three schools.

Cllr Grant Davey, Leader of Northumberland County Council said: “Setting a budget in the current financial climate poses a real challenge for councils up and down the country and we know that in the next two financial years we will have to save more than £44m from our revenue budgets.

“This is on top of the £160 million savings that have been made since 2009 due to government cuts. This level of saving cannot be made from efficiencies alone but we want to protect frontline services while continuing to invest in the future.

“Over many months we’ve been looking very carefully at every area of our business to see how we can reduce expenditure, increase income and make savings while minimising the impact on frontline services, residents and council staff.

“We’ve reviewed all our services to make sure they provide value for money and are operating as efficiently as possible.

“We’ve had to assess all our spending and carefully considered where we can change, reduce or remove services causing the least possible damage to the people of Northumberland.

“We’ve also reviewed all of our fees and charges while looking at how we can make improvements to the way we manage demand for services.

“At the same time we’ve been looking at ambitious investment in the future of this county across a range of areas. This is part of our long term economic plan which will boost employment, economic opportunities and support frontline services across Northumberland, regardless of geography.”

Cllr Davey added: “It’s important to stress no final decisions have been made, at present these are just proposals.

“That’s why we need people’s ideas, feedback and opinions to help us shape these services. It’s vital we get residents’ views before we make difficult decisions about the budget.”

The proposals include:

Of the proposed £44million savings, around £26million over the next two years will come from improved efficiencies including smarter use of IT, better use of the council’s buildings and sale of some properties and a review of library, tourism and tourist information centres to join up services where possible.

The remainder over the next two years will come from income generation (£8.47million), cuts in service (around £2.9million), controlling inflation (around £6.27million) and managing demand on services (around £0.35million).

It’s proposed to increase Council Tax by 1.99% in each of the next two years – an increase of 54 pence a week for a Band D property.

The proposals will be discussed by the council’s policy board on December 9th before councillors receive a further budget report in February 2015, with recommendations then being made to the full County Council for a decision.

Budget proposals public consultation

This is an eight week public consultation of our budget proposals for 2015/16 - 2016/17.
It starts on 26/11/2014 and ends on 23/01/2015.

 

Please read our budget proposals guide before starting the consultation questionnaire:

 

Supporting information: