A pile of coins. The Council has approved its budget for the coming year

Council approves budget for coming year

The County Council has voted to approve next year’s budget which ‘prioritises the protection of frontline services and focuses on ambitious investment in the county’. 

Council Leader Glen Sanderson said: “I’m very proud of this budget and grateful for the support our proposals have had.  

“We’ve protected the services and issues that people tell us matter the most – from free carparking in our towns, more emphasis on climate change and our environment, and continued investment in public toilets and leisure centres. 

“We’re attracting more Government funding than ever before which is being invested in town centre regeneration across the county, new schools and hugely important schemes such as the Northumberland Line, which will open later this year. 

“And although it’s been a relatively mild winter, the amount of rainfall has affected our highways and this budget includes £36 million in funding to maintain the county’s roads. We’ve also set extra funding aside specifically for repairs to smaller U and C-class roads in rural areas. 

“Of course we must act responsibly so that we can invest in the county’s future, and that’s exactly what we’re doing. At the same time we have not touched our General Fund reserves and do not intend to.” 

From April 2024, Council Tax will rise by 2.99% in the new year. The adult social care precept will also increase by 2%. This is the same rise as 95% of councils across the country, according to data compiled by the County Councils Network. 

For 2024-25 efficiencies of £10.834 million have been identified and agreed to balance the budget. 

Cllr Sanderson added: “Wherever possible we’ll be working more efficiently and using technology where needed to do things the best way we can.  

"Our three key priorities remain - to give value for money to our residents, to drive investment and jobs, and to tackle Inequalities. These will continue to be set in stone going forward. 

“Of course all this wouldn’t be possible without our staff who work every day to provide first class services and I want to pay tribute to the commitment and excellence they bring to our county year in year out.” 

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