Cumbria County Council Optimistic For The Future Despite A Challenging Year

Cumbria County Council remains optimistic for the future and has continued to deliver its services despite a very challenging year.

Over the last year the impact of COVID-19 has been significant on everyone and it has placed additional pressure on the council’s budget and on its finite resources.

Despite this additional pressure, the council has remained focussed on protecting the most vulnerable and on supporting Cumbria’s communities.

At a meeting of Cumbria County Council’s Full Council, the following was agreed:

  • A general increase of Council Tax by 1.99 percent for 2021/22
  • An additional precept for Adult Social Care of 2.00 percent for 2021/22
  • The Medium-Term Financial Plan (MTFP) for 2021-2026

This is a total increase on Cumbria County Council’s share of council tax of 3.99 percent.

Councillor Peter Thornton, Deputy Leader of Cumbria County Council, and portfolio holder with responsibility for finance said: “Cumbria County Council remains optimistic despite a very challenging year.

“We have a strong track record in protecting frontline services while delivering savings in response to reduced government funding.

“We have a legal requirement to present a balanced budget and protect services and to do this we have reluctantly taken the difficult decision to increase the County Council’s share of council tax by a total of 3.99 percent for 2021/22.

“We had previously planned a 1.99 percent rise in Council tax but the Chancellor’s spending review made it clear that our calculated spending power assumed an additional 3 percent Adult Social Care precept with the option to defer all or part of this to 2022/23.

“The budget proposal includes an increase in the Adult Social Care precept by 2 percent in 2021/22 and 1 percent in 2022/23.

“We, and our fellow councils of all political persuasions, agree that government cannot continue to see council tax rises as being the way to fund increasing social care needs.

“There are still significant pressures on the county council’s core budget. This increase will help raise £5million to invest into essential council services for the most vulnerable and the people who need our support right now in addition to a further £5million ring fenced to deliver social care.

“I want the public to know that the county council has worked very hard to keep this proposed increase as low as is possible, and it equates to £4.79 a month on a Band D property.

“The money generated will help us provide essential services to those who need them the most and it also ensures that we will deliver the legally balanced budget this year.”