Nottinghamshire County Council is continuing an “ambitious programme of investment,” despite the financial pressures of recent years caused by ever-increasing demand for children’s and adult social care services.
The Council’s Finance and Major Contracts Management Committee will consider the financial position and proposals for its 2020/21 budget when it meets on 10 February.
The initial proposals include a recommendation to increase Council Tax by 1.99 per cent (which equates to on average 48p per week) and the Adult Social Care precept by 2 per cent.
A final decision on the budget proposals, council tax and social care levy will be taken at Full Council on 27 February.
Councillor Richard Jackson, Chairman of the Finance and Major Contracts Management Committee at Nottinghamshire County Council, said: “Despite financial pressures, we are determined to build on our proven track record of making capital investments in the county’s infrastructure.
“This budget outlines plans for new and replacement schools totalling £31.3 million, a record £49.5 million investment to improve our roads, investment in new communities, a continuing commitment to libraries and young people’s centres and a £22 million cash commitment for Better Broadband, achieving 98.4% superfast coverage across the county.
“These major plans will benefit us in years to come by improving educational outcomes for our children and attracting new businesses to create more jobs when they are older. The 1.99 per cent increase is broadly in line with inflation and enables us to continue to provide excellent services for the people of Nottinghamshire.”
Further highlights included in the 2020/21 budget report are:
- Major road improvements such as the new £20.5 million Gedling Access Road (GAR) which is due to open in 2021. This will significantly reduce traffic through Gedling Village and link communities in the area to other parts of the county while progressing the sustainable redevelopment of the former Gedling Colliery/Chase Farm site.
- 2020/21 is the third year of a four-year, extra £20 million investment in upgrading roads across the county. This includes investment in new machinery and significantly improving the quality and quantity of road repairs.
- Our commitment to develop a new village at Top Wighay, including the proposed development of a new council office, improved roads, open space for recreation and a new primary school.
- Our continued improvements to local bus services through a £3.7 million bus subsidy budget and our ongoing investment with partners in green bus technology.
Councillor Jackson continued: “We are pleased that the Government has listened to the campaign for more funding led by the County Councils Network, of which we are vocal supporters.
“This Council has received £40 million of additional Government funding including £20 million of additional social care funding, which has put the authority on a healthier footing to deliver even better outcomes for our residents.
“There remain huge pressures on our services to care for Looked After Children, which have required an extra £8.4 million of investment during the last year, so the proposed council tax rise is critical to help us meet these demands.
“We recognise the value of services such as libraries. When many councils across the country are closing theirs, we have honoured our commitment to keep 60 libraries across Nottinghamshire open, with an investment in recent years of more than £10 million.”
Councillor Jackson also pointed out that the Local Government Peer Review in 2019 described Nottinghamshire County Council as “an effective council delivering good quality citizen-focused services to its residents’ and as ‘a dependable, reliable, solid organisation.”