There is still one week left to give your views and ideas on Plymouth City Council’s proposals for closing an unprecedented £37.6m shortfall in its revenue budget for next year (Deadline 4 December).
A recent report to Cabinet highlighted how inflation, rising energy costs and rising demand for social care services are causing huge budget pressures for all local authorities and outlined a package of proposals to help close Plymouth’s gap.
The Council is asking for views on around 80 proposals funded by the ‘revenue budget’ that it is considering. These include:
- Reducing costs in children’s social care, including working with families to keep more children at home, reducing the use of residential care and reviewing organisational structures
- Managing and reducing demand on adult social care
- Reviewing early help provision and children’s centres, alongside partners
- Reducing subsidies for bus services that cannot be run commercially
- Reviewing senior management
- Vacating buildings earlier than planned
- Increasing fees and charges by 10 per cent in 2023/4
Even if all the proposed savings are approved, the Council will still have another £11m of savings to identify from the revenue budget before it can fulfil its statutory duty to set a balanced budget for 2023/24 in February.
The Council wants to hear feedback about the proposals, as well as further ideas and suggestions for how it can reduce costs and raise income. The deadline to have your say is 4 December 2022.
Views can now be given through a questionnaire on the Council’s website.
Council Leader Richard Bingley said: “Like Councils up and down the country we are in a very serious financial situation due to unprecedented external pressures that are not within our control.
“Throughout this process we aim to safeguard the services that matter most to people and those that support the most vulnerable, which is why it is important that we hear the views of Plymouth residents.
“We are leaving no stone unturned to identify savings and our first tranche of proposals would go a long way to helping us close the gap. I would urge everyone to take the time to look at the proposals and give their views and ideas before we have to make our final decisions in order to set a balanced budget.”
Plymouth City Council has a very wide range of responsibilities for delivering services in the city, supporting Plymouth’s residents and championing the city’s interests.
The Council’s revenue budget enables us to deliver more than 300 services – as diverse as bin collections, protecting vulnerable children, providing libraries, making planning decisions, providing leisure facilities, providing parking, maintaining roads and pavements and looking after Plymouth’s parks and green spaces. We have a legal duty to provide some of these services, while others are discretionary.
The capital budget is a different form of expenditure. This is the money we spend on longer term items including the council’s assets and Plymouth’s infrastructure e.g. road improvements, schools or delivering new buildings such as The Box.
Both the revenue and capital budgets are separate. To find out more about council budgets visit our budget explainer page