Council Budget and Savings Programme 2016/17
Please note: This consultation and survey has been updated to include revised questions on a 1.99% council tax increase and a 2% social care precept. Further information about this is available in our budget setting update.
South Gloucestershire Council is currently consulting on its budget, council tax levels for next year and its overall savings plan. The council asks council tax payers their views each year before agreeing its budget and council tax. This is your opportunity to comment on the council’s priorities, its council tax and proposals to improve services and increase efficiency.
You can tell us your views on these important areas by completing our survey or by contacting us using the details listed below.
The council's budget
Excluding schools, we spend over £336 million a year. Central Government provides about £91m in grants towards these costs. In addition we spend about £186 million on our schools and this is fully funded by Government grant. The first pie chart below shows how we currently spend your money, the second one shows where we get our income.
Further information about the council's budget is available here.
The council is considering its council tax levels for 2016/17 and future years.
The council has no control over the council tax collected on behalf of the police, fire services, or parish and town councils. Each of these bodies will make their own independent decisions.
The maximum amount the council can raise its council tax by next year has been limited in previous years to 2%unless we had held a referendum of residents. South Gloucestershire Council's element of the Council Tax has been frozen for the past five years and the council’s current budget planning assumption is for a council tax increase of 2% in 2016/17, followed by a 2%p.a. increase in each of the subsequent years.
A 2% increase would add about £25 (just under 50p per week) to the average band D annual council tax bill for South Gloucestershire Council services.
To increase council tax above 2% we would need to hold a referendum of residents. The cost of holding a referendum would be approximately £500,000. No council has taken up this option to date.
In his autumn spending review, the Chancellor George Osborne, announced new powers for specified local authorities to raise an additional two per cent council tax levy, which would then be used solely to support care for older people. Nationally, it is estimated that by 2019/20 the cost of supporting older people’s care needs will increase by some £6 billion. The additional 2% council tax levy will contribute around £2 billion towards this increase in 2019/20 if all relevant authorities take up this option.
This would mean a 3.99% council tax increase for South Gloucestershire Council if taken. This would mean an increase of £49.68 per year (£4.14 per month) for a band D household. This would raise an additional £4.481 million.
Further information about council tax is available here.
The Council Savings Programme (CSP)
Like all local authorities we face significant financial challenges as national austerity measures continue. During the last five years we have reduced our spending by nearly £45m (from a net budget of £190m) through efficiency measures and this has helped us to protect frontline services from spending reductions while delivering better value for money to residents. At the same time we have frozen council tax for the last five years, supporting local residents through the period of austerity.
We need to continue to reduce our spending by 2019/20 and have already provisionally identified £34m of further savings. This is a significant amount, and will involve far-reaching changes to our role as well as the services we provide. We will become a smaller council, delivering fewer services, and will need to review our priorities to make sure our more limited resources are focused on our ‘core’ activities. At the same time we will look to work more closely with local communities, strengthening and encouraging communities to take greater responsibility for local services to ensure that people's needs are met.
The Council Savings Programme (CSP) sets out how the council plans to deliver its savings and efficiency programme up to 2019/20. It will be subject to more detailed consultation on each proposal before implementation and potentially other options may come forward.
Find out more and have your say
We welcome comments on the council's budget, council tax levels and the council saving programme between 9 November and 31 January 2016. Please note that the consultation survey will close on the 18 December 2015, however any comments received before 1 February 2016 will be reported to councilors when they set the budget on 17 February 2016.
We are particularly keen to find out if you feel that all relevant areas are being considered and whether you think there are any specific impacts or alternatives that the council should consider. A copy of the initial draft equality impact assessment is available and we would also welcome comments on this.
Further information is available by contacting us using the details listed below or from your local South Gloucestershire library and One Stop Shop.
You can find out more or tell us your views by:
- Email: email@example.com
- Completing our consultation survey (also available to download)
- Write to: FREEPOST Plus RTCT-JXLE-EET, South Gloucestershire Council, Corporate Research & Consultation Team, Budget Consultation, Civic Centre, High Street, Kingswood, BRISTOL, BS15 9TR
- Phone: 01454 868009
Council officers will also be available to answer questions at the Area Forums
- Chase Area Forum: 16 November, 7pm, Kingswood Civic Centre
- Southern Brooks Area Forum: 17 November, 7pm Wallscourt Farm Academy
- Kings Forest Area Forum: 23 November, 7pm, Kingswood Civic Centre
- Frome Vale Area Forum: 26 November, 7pm, Chipping Sodbury Baptist Church
- Severnvale Area Forum: 2 December, 7pm, Turnberries, Thornbury
If you would like someone to talk to your group or organisation about this consultation, please contact us using the details above to arrange.
9 Nov 2015 at 00:00
31 Jan 2016 at 15:00
10 Feb 2016
Summary of Results
Budget Consultation Findings
This report outlines the findings of the budget consultation
|Marking a consultation as relevant to a particular audience indicates that it may be of special relevance to people within that group. It doesn't, however, mean that other groups wont find the consultation of interest - we welcome responses from everybody.
For example, education issues may be of particular interest to Parents & Guardians, and so will be shown to people searching the system for parenting issues, but the views of others (eg: Business, Faith Groups) are also relevant.