Town Council Aiming to Freeze the Council Tax Next Year
The Town Council is in the process of developing and setting its Revenue and Capital Budget for the 2021/22 financial year.
The Town Council is very aware that 2020 has been a difficult year for the community of Great Aycliffe with the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic affecting the lives of us all.
The lockdown periods, social distancing measures and other restrictions have meant the Town Council has not been able to provide some of its services to the usual standards this year and has unfortunately led to the cancellation of a number of much loved community events including the senior citizens’ trips, fun in the parks and fireworks display.
The Town Council wishes to recognise the impact of the pandemic on local services and the community of Great Aycliffe in two ways next year.
Firstly we have prepared our budget for next year on the basis of a freeze in the Town Council proportion of the Council Tax bill.
Despite this proposed council tax freeze, thanks to the prudent financial management of the Council over many years, and the ongoing identification and delivery of efficiency savings, the proposed 2021/22 Revenue Budget will enable all current Council services, facilities and events to be provided to the usual high standards next year.
The Council will also continue to use its earmarked reserves to make investment in community assets next year via our Capital Programme Budget with planned projects including improvements to Woodham Park play area, replacement of allotments fencing and remembrance seating.
Secondly, the Council wishes to pass back to the community the savings it has made in the current year as a result of reduced services and cancelled events, by setting up a COVID-19 Recovery Fund and using this to make a number of one-off investments next year to help make 2021 a better year for the Parish.
Initial ideas for investment include the setup of a community grants fund, additional or improved events and environmental improvements such as tree planting.
Have Your Say
Clearly the budget that we set is important to our local community, both in terms of how our spending plans may impact on the provision of local services and investment in assets for the benefit of the town, and in terms of the level of Council Tax that we need to raise from local taxpayers in order to fund these plans.
The Council would therefore very much welcome the views of the local community on our 2021/22 budget proposals.
You can provide your views via our recently published Budget Survey which can be accessed electronically via this link:- https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/2GPFDM2
There is much more information on the Council’s draft 2021/22 budget proposals, should you wish to read this, on the finance section of the Council’s website.