Our revenue budget for the next financial year (2020/2021) was approved at a Full Council meeting earlier this week (Wednesday 26 February).
To fund the budget, a £5 increase in our share of council tax bills was agreed, the same rise as last year. This is an increase of 2.8 per cent per average household for the coming year.
A resident in a Band D property will pay an average of just over £182 in council tax for our services for the year 2020/21 - which equates to around 50p per day. That money is used to fund services including waste and recycling; planning; housing; parks and open spaces; street cleaning and environmental health; benefits administration and contributions towards Police Community Support Officers and the Citizens Advice Bureau.
Portfolio Holder for Finance and Property, Cllr John Graham, commented: "We have taken a cautious approach to setting this year's budget as the latest government spending round was for a single year rather than the multi-year settlement that had been anticipated. We have already seen a steep decline in government funding generally since 2010, meaning we are increasingly looking to new and innovative ways to generate income and balance our budget.
“We have agreed an increase of £5 for our share of council tax in the budget for this forthcoming financial year. This will be essential to enable us to continue to deliver our existing and growing range of services for Hertsmere’s residents."
As a billing authority, we collect the council tax every year, but the money residents pay does not all go to the borough council. On average, we get 10 per cent, or 10p in every £1 residents pay, Hertfordshire County Council gets 77 per cent, Hertfordshire's Police and Crime Commissioner gets 11 per cent and, if residents live in an area with a parish or town council, (Aldenham Parish Council, Elstree and Borehamwood Town Council, Shenley Parish Council and South Mimms Parish Council), those councils receive two per cent.
The key headlines from the budget are:
The budget process and financial strategy link closely with our corporate plan and enables the delivery of its goals and objectives. The three corporate goals being: being an enterprising council; planning for the future and supporting our communities
Local government had anticipated a further multi-year finance settlement from 2020/21, but central government announced a single year spending round for 2020/21 instead due to other priorities around Brexit.
This year sees a small increase in general government funding, the first since 2010, through an increase in the business rates baseline grant, however the decline in central government funding since 2010 means that it now represents just 23 per cent of our funding compared to 54 per cent in 2010/11,
Posted on Friday 28th February 2020