Trafford Council has approved its budget for the next financial year, which includes an extra £7.8 million to support vulnerable adults and children, and an extra £13.7 million on school buildings.
Councillors approved the budget for 2021-22 at a Council meeting on Wednesday, with the Council managing to balance its books despite massive financial pressures due to Covid.
The pandemic has contributed to a budget gap of £25.52 million. Measures to close the gap including using £11.14 million of reserves and savings of £9.18 million, while an increase in Council Tax will bring in an extra £5.2 million.
Council Tax will therefore increase by 4.99%, which is made up of a 1.99% general increase and 3% related to adult social care.
Cllr Tom Ross, Executive Member for Finance and Governance, said:
This has been an incredibly hard budget to set due to the unprecedented pressures caused the Covid pandemic. But we have produced a budget that sits with our mission to build the best future for everyone in Trafford.
“The extra millions for adult and children’s social care means people in Trafford will receive support when they need it most.
“We are also continuing to invest in our schools so that all children will have a fair start and enable them to thrive.
“Our investments in town centres, including an extra £17.6 million over the next couple of years from the Future High Street Fund, shows our continued commitment to having successful and thriving town centres and communities.”
Other investments for the forthcoming year include an extra £10.7 million for major highways and infrastructure improvements, an extra £2.7 million for leisure and sports facilities, and £3.8 million on public works in town centres.
The Council’s commitment to the environment can also be seen from its investment in cycling and walking schemes, electrical charging points and improvements to green spaces and biodiversity.
However, the budget report also revealed that there will be a budget gap of £21 million over the next two years.
Cllr Ross said:
We will continue to take the necessary measures to make sure we can help our vulnerable residents, support our local businesses and make sure our communities thrive.”
Posted on Friday 19th February 2021