Torbay Council’s Partnership Cabinet has now published its revenue and capital budget proposals for 2023/24 and wants to hear your views.
The council has proposed am increase of 4.99% for council tax 2023/2024.
Torbay Council states it has £8m inflationary pressures. This includes increasing costs for adult social care, rising costs of placements for children who need them and a huge increase in their electricity bill, with energy costs up by more than £1m, with over half of that for street lighting.
Torbay council state to “create a safer and stronger Torbay and to ensure communities thrive”, the Partnership Administration is looking to invest in priority areas in 2023/24. These include:
– £5.25m of council funding and central government grants to support Torbay households with the cost-of-living crisis.
– Utilising the social care grant to support pressures in both adults and children’s services.
– £1000 thank you payment to foster carers.
– Further £25,000 investment in sport through Torbay on the Move, which is on top of the £50,000 already provided.
– A further one-off investment of £100,000 towards our ambition of becoming the UK’s Premier resort.
– £50,000 to help improve skills.
– Continuing the live streaming of Council meetings.
– £72,000 in the grass roots Community Ward Fund for a third year.
Proposals also include:
– Increasing income where possible, such as through an improved offer at Torre Abbey and events at Torquay seafront.
– Reducing the Council’s carbon emissions and increasing recycling rates to reduce associated costs.
The Capital plan includes:
– £110 million of capital works programmed for 2023/24.
– Additional secondary school placements at St Cuthbert Mayne School.
– Extra care housing at Crossways and Torre Marine.
– Temporary accommodation.
– Investment in Edginswell Business Park, Town Deal and Future High Streets projects.
– Carbon neutral initiatives.
Torbay Council is looking to increase Council Tax by the maximum amount of 2.99%, with an additional 2% increase for the adult social care precept. Each 1% increase in Council Tax generates £750,000.
Cllr Steve Darling, Leader of Torbay Council, said; “We will continue to lobby for a fairer deal for Torbay along with other local authorities so we can build a stronger economy and create safer environments for vulnerable adults and children. In the meantime, we continue to tackle the challenges head on and put people at the heart of our budget proposals.
“Last year we faced financial challenges owing to the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic, this year we are faced with further pressures due to the cost-of-living crisis which is affecting us all. Where we can, we will help to ease the financial burden that many households are facing whilst delivering services to our communities.”
Cllr Darren Cowell, Deputy Leader of Torbay Council, said; “Over the past 4-years we have made significant investments, efficiencies, and improvements to many Council services to help create safer streets and a stronger economy which will help to strengthen our communities. We are starting to see the benefits of these decisions, with more to come over the next financial year.
“It is never an easy decision to increase Council Tax for households, especially those who are already struggling. But due to rising costs and demands and real term cut in the Government grant we don’t have enough funding to pay for key services. We have been left with little choice – especially as we want and need to effectively deliver a range of core services that benefit everyone in Torbay.”
The budget proposals will be available from 12 noon on Tuesday 10 January on the Council’s budget webpage www.torbay.gov.uk/budget-202324
The consultation will run from 11 January until 12 February.
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