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Approved budget 2020/21 to 2022/23

A Budget to Protect Vital Services

Consolidating the Council's financial position and managing the uncertainty of future funding are the priorities for the budget for 2020/21, which was agreed at Budget Council last night (Monday 24th February 2020).

The Government has not yet announced the level of funding for local authorities beyond 2020. This means that next year's budget only covers the spending and savings decisions needed in 2020/21 for which funding levels are known.

We continue to face extreme budget pressures as the current level of demand for children's and adults' social care is unprecedented, particularly from those with complex needs.

Supporting the recovery after Storms Ciara and Dennis and preventative work to reduce the risk of future flooding across the Calder Valley are also priorities within the budget, as is the need to respond to the climate emergency. The Council has therefore announced the development of a £1 million investment programme to help create a ‘Carbon Neutral Fund’ to progress environmental projects run by the Council and local communities.

It is too early to know the exact cost of the recent flooding as the continued bad weather has made assessment of some of our key infrastructure, particularly some of our bridges, too difficult at this stage. However, once this has been completed we will assess what resources are required, later in the year.

What is clear is how vital it is for us to continue to protect funding to those services which we rely on to respond during flooding and its aftermath, since these are so critical to the recovery of our communities.

We must make £745,000 in savings to make sure the budget is balanced by March 2021. This will be achieved by:

  • Reducing the Council contributions to the Council's pension fund so that frontline services can be protected.
  • Accepting one-off savings relating to the West Yorkshire Combined Authority's Transport Fund.
  • Replacing the proposed Council funding for market town improvements with the Government funding announced for Elland, Halifax, Sowerby Bridge, Todmorden and Brighouse.

The chance to access up to £75 million from the Government for market towns in Calderdale will help create an environment of thriving independent retail, support local businesses, address traffic problems and maximise and share the wider benefits of culture, arts and heritage.

  • To help maintain essential local services, Council Tax will rise by 1.99%.
  • The Social Care Precept will be used to raise a further 2%. This is so we can continue to give high quality care for frail and vulnerable people and to help meet increasing demand as the population ages.
  • An extra £1 million has been allocated to children's social care.
  • An extra £2.5 million will be invested annually in adults' social care to help these services to stay sustainable.

Once future funding is clear the Cabinet has highlighted four areas on which they will focus:

  • Addressing local poverty. We will work with partners to tackle homelessness and support the poorest households in our communities.
  • Taking action on the climate emergency. We has declared a climate emergency and its Climate Change Working Party is developing the Council's response. Work on the Council's Re:fit programme, to make its own buildings more energy efficient and the £22 million LED street lighting replacement scheme will continue and further actions will be identified by the Working Party.
  • Developing sustainable towns. We will use the Future High Streets, Towns and High Streets Heritage Action Zone funding from the Government to help communities and businesses thrive.
  • Increasing affordable housing. We will take an active role in building new homes in Calderdale through its development company, with a £4 million budget to stimulate house building and continue to work with its partners.

We continue to hold 'Calderdale Conversations' with people about their vision for the borough and the role of the Council throughout 2020. This approach will inform the Council's future budget decisions on priorities such as reducing the causes of deprivation and inequalities, developing sustainable towns and acting on climate change.

For more details on the proposals, please read: 

Councillor Tim Swift


Leader, Calderdale Council.

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