Derby City Council’s Medium Term Financial Plan (MTFP) will take a step closer to being approved next week, with the Council’s Cabinet reviewing final budget proposals ahead of Full Council approval at the end of the month (Monday 28 February).
The revised proposals consider comments from the public, local businesses and politicians during a four-week consultation period.
Despite considerable budget pressures that remain as the city continues to emerge from the impacts of COVID-19, the MTFP sits alongside a revised Council Plan, that paints an ambitious and overall positive picture for the coming financial years. The report proposes a net revenue budget of almost £260m for 2022/23.
Priorities for the future will be focused around four partnership themes:
- Green Derby – Making a positive impact on our environment
- Vibrant Derby – A reimagined City Centre with culture at its heart
- Growth Derby – Creating a modern smart city with jobs and skills for the future
- Resilient Derby – Working with communities to reduce poverty and inequalities
The themes have been co-produced and adopted by the city-wide Partnership Board, which will help support planning, co-operation and collaboration across the city in the future. In particular, the Council Plan sets out the shared ambitions of the city and refocuses investment and priorities to deliver against these – Working with the city, for the city
Along with the new partnership themes, the Council has an ambitious transformation and improvement project called ‘Working Smarter’. This aims to deliver the modern, effective and value for money public services to ensure that the Council’s finances are manageable and sustainable over the medium to long term.
Perhaps the most ambitious proposal being put forward in the MTFP is the £414m Capital programme for 2021/22 – 2023/24 which includes £114m for Housing and £71.5m for Highways.
Cllr Jonathan Smale, Cabinet Member for Finance, Assets and Digital Services, said: “Against the backdrop of increasing demands following the pandemic and increasing costs within the economy the Council has worked hard to plan for a balanced budget for next year and improved financial sustainability in the medium-term. The budget proposals aim to deliver shared outcomes for and with the city, supported by significant change programmes to improve the effectiveness of services and to work with communities and partners in developing new service models.
“We have looked across the Council for efficiencies and savings and despite the size of the financial challenge facing Councils have managed to minimise job losses and protect many services that resident value. Partnership work is at its core and alongside the Council Plan, sets out aspiring plans for the city.
“Planning for the future to help balance budget is our priority and will help support the city to be more ambitious and inform our strategy for future years.”
Simon Riley, Strategic Director for Corporate Resources added: “Significant work has happened to enable us to bring forward a balanced but ambitious budget for the coming year.
“I’d like to thank Council colleagues for their hard work to support this budget and also our residents for taking the time to feedback on our proposals.”
The budget will be reviewed at next Wednesday’s Council Cabinet meeting.