Thank you to everyone who took part in this questionnaire which closed on 5pm, Friday 22 December 2017. The results have now been collated - download the report.
A quick overview of our financial position
To help you answer our questionnaire, we have put together a quick overview of our financial position. We hope you find this useful.
This year (2017/2018) we will spend just over £11 million (£11,034,750) on local services. We will receive just over £6 million (£6,094,000) in council tax to help fund this. We will fund the balance (£4,090,750) through business rates, core government grant and New Homes Bonus.
The government has been reducing the amount of core government grant we receive every year, and next year we will get nothing. This means we will face significant and ongoing challenges to provide the same level of services, and either need to make further savings or generate additional income to fund the services we deliver.
The following two graphs below show how council services (after fees and charges) were funded in 2010/11 and how they are projected to be funded in 2018/19 to illustrate the changes:
We have agreed a package of measures for 2018/2019 that will help us to bridge our funding shortfall, including the introduction of charges for our garden waste/brown bin service, and outsourcing the management of our leisure centres to a private operator.
The level of savings we have made in 2015/16 and 2016/17 and plan to make in 2017/18 is shown below:
However we need to find more savings and generate more income, as further cuts to our funding streams are likely.
>> We will ask you to give your views on savings and income ideas in this questionnaire. Your responses will help in setting budgets for 2018/19 and beyond.
About your council tax
We only keep 10% of the council tax you pay (that’s about £165 a year for an average local home). We pass the rest to Staffordshire County Council, the Police & Crime Commissioner for Staffordshire, Staffordshire Fire & Rescue and local parish councils, as shown below:
How your council tax is spent locally
Our element (10%) of your council tax is used to fund the following key priorities:
Please note, a vibrant and prosperous economy is shown in brackets as it produces an income which is used to help support other services.
How we compare nationally
We are among the lowest charging district councils in the country, so the services we provide are good value when compared to many district councils nationwide. An average home in our district pays £165 a year for the services we provide, whereas Ipswich Borough Council, for example, charges £341 a year for similar services. The table below compares council tax charged by district councils nationwide:
To meet our funding gap next year, we will consider increasing the amount of council tax we charge for our element of your bill.
The government will allow us to increase the council tax we charge by a maximum of £5 for an average home. If we were to increase by this level (together with projected housing growth) it would generate an extra £259,000 which is the near to the cost of running Beacon Park.