Council set to end year in budget
The latest financial information shows that Telford & Wrekin Council expects to end the year in budget, despite another year of significant cuts.
During 2017/18 the Council will take almost £14 million out of its budget, while over the next two years to 2020 it expects to have to find a further £15-£20 million to save from its budget.
The Council says that its latest forecasts show that it expects to end its financial year in budget despite rising cost pressures in two key areas – the costs of adult social care and for looked after children.
However, these extra costs of £4 million have been largely offset by other savings that the Council has made through its sound financial approach and by making some use of its contingency fund, ensuring the Council is set to stay within budget.
The Council had also already earmarked additional extra funding this year for these two areas which face significant pressures, primarily due to high numbers of children in care nationally and a growing older population that is living longer and requires more social care support.
The two services responsible Children’s Safeguarding and Early help and Support have been given a total of £5 million extra this year to help ease pressures from growing demand for their services.
Cabinet member for finance Lee Carter said: “While a number of councils are struggling to balance their budgets, it is good to see that our approach of sound and prudent financial management and investing to generate return which helps support front line services is helping to ensure we remain on track to end the year in budget.
"I am very grateful for everyone’s hard work so far to get us to this position – it has not been easy.
“However as we look further ahead there are many very significant challenges and tough decisions on the horizon, as continued Government reductions mean we need to save up to another £20 million from our budget by 2020.
“We must continue to seek longer-term solutions to the challenges in these and other areas and will continue to seek people’s views on how best to achieve this. In addition it is only right that we continue to lobby Government to recognise the challenges faced by local authorities.”