Cllr Peter Jackson, leader of council

Budget approved to invest in Northumberland’s future

Northumberland County Council has agreed its budget for 2020/21 which outlines an ambitious programme of investment across the county.

The council’s budget is focussed on making sure services are delivered in the best possible way, securing value for money, as well as investing in and protecting vital frontline services.

Council Leader Peter Jackson said: “In December we launched our latest budget consultation, which set out how we aimed to balance the books and make sure we spend every single penny of taxpayers money wisely, but also deliver on our commitment to grow the economy and look after the most vulnerable in our communities.

“Whilst our budget is about managing demand and protecting frontline services, we are still increasing our spending in vital services including adult social care and children’s services.

“We are more ambitious than ever to invest in our county’s future, and deliver on the biggest capital investment programme that Northumberland has ever seen, with a targeted £678.5 million programme of investment and development across our schools, in housing, our roads, and in state of the art leisure facilities.”

Councillors approved efficiencies of £9.8 million in 2020/21 in order to deliver a balanced budget.

To help protect frontline services and address significant demand in services, the council has reluctantly agreed an increase of 1.99% to Council Tax 2020/21, alongside an Adult Care precept increase of 2% specifically for use on adult social care services. 

The Leader added: “There’s no doubt that demand for services has grown, with increased costs and growing pressures particularly in adults and children’s services.

“However our focus has been very much on transforming how we deliver services and redesigning these to better meet the needs of the residents of Northumberland. Our service reform needs to meet our ambitions to make sure our organisation is fit for purpose.”

“We’re determined to shine a light on all that is great about Northumberland as a place to work, live, visit and do business.

“Approving this budget gives us a chance to do this and make significant improvements, to deliver improved services and better value for money for the communities we serve, and support a thriving local economy that everyone can benefit from.”

The financial plan and related documents can be read here.
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