Saturday 20 April 2024
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Nottingham

Rushcliffe Borough Council budget invests over £24m in services

Rushcliffe Borough Council’s (RBC) budget is delivering both the lowest council tax in the county and continues to invest significantly in its services and assets, following a Full Council meeting to discuss its proposals yesterday (Thursday).

It set out its Council Tax level will again be the lowest in Nottinghamshire with further investment in ‘green projects’ and trying to mitigate the impact of flooding.

Its Council Tax charge for 2024/25 will be in the lowest 25% in the country and again the lowest in the county as a Band D property increases by just £3.93 for the 12 months from April 2024 or 2.55%, equivalent to less than 8p per week.

The Council is currently debt-free and therefore not impacted by significant increases in interest rates on borrowing faced by some authorities.

Cabinet Portfolio Holder for Finance, Transformation and Governance Cllr Davinder Virdi said: “In a time of significant pressures and real terms decreases in funding, RBC is continuing to embrace opportunities that support the economic growth and development in the Borough and maintain discretionary services valued by residents.

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“This year’s budget has had its challenges but also builds on opportunities whilst responding effectively to the combination of the legacy of Covid and international conflict has had on the significant impact on inflation.

“Importantly in being debt free the Council and not paying borrowing costs which increase with higher interest rates and the Council has taken effective steps to deal with financial pressures.”

Cllr Neil Clarke, Leader of the Council added: “The Council continues to identify efficiencies and has had to do so given inflation pressures outstripping growth in Council Tax income.

“The stable financial position compared to many councils is down to the culmination of hard work by both Councillors and officers to keep Council Tax the lowest in Nottinghamshire, further assisting residents with cost-of-living increases.

“We are appreciative of the stark challenges that us and many of our peers in local government are facing and that we remain realistic about our financial outlook.

“We will continue to deliver excellent services to our community and have a budget that supports the most vulnerable such as the homeless and balancing other objectives such as supporting climate change, improving the environment and focusing on continuing to grow the Borough as a great place to both live and work.

“With additional government funding, we will utilise £100,000 of the Government’s Minimum Funding Guarantee for the Climate Change Reserve that could see us further improve our green spaces within the Borough as we work towards a Carbon Neutral Borough by 2030.

“We are also looking to set up a £28,000 Flood Grant and Resilience Reserve to help local properties in flooding emergencies and address gaps we see in the current national guidance when the national flood scheme is in operation.

“The funding will also re-invigorate the existing flood resilience store grant scheme to assist communities in managing floods in their local areas.

“Rushcliffe remains a great place to live and work with excellent leisure facilities, highlighted by the opening of Bingham Arena last year and the ongoing investment in Council assets, over £24m over the next 5 years, such as improving Keyworth and Cotgrave leisure centres.

“I am proud that we can present a budget that enables us to provide excellent services, delivers an ambitious programme whilst keeping Council Tax as one of the lowest in the country for our residents.”

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