Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Government Grant Settlement Means Less Funding As Expected – But Councillors Warn More Details Still Needed

Council leaders have warned the “devil is in the detail” as information has begun to be released about the Government’s grant funding for local authorities next year.

Information released by the Department for Communities and Local Government today (Wednesday 18 December) has confirmed South Cambridgeshire District Council’s grant settlement for 2014/15 will be cut by 24% – a reduction of around £870,000.

Figures released for 2015/16 suggest a similar cut will be imposed, but senior councillors have said that more information is still needed before the full effect of the reduction in grant is known.

In agreeing the budget for this year councillors pledged to deliver a package of efficiency savings equivalent to £12 for every average band D home in the district. These are in addition to round £4 million of savings that have been made over the last three years.

Information about additional grant funding, known as New Homes Bonus, has also been released which shows the Council could receive up to £3.2 million during 2014/15. This funding is provided to high growth areas to help deliver new homes, facilities and infrastructure.

Cllr Simon Edwards, South Cambridgeshire District Council’s deputy leader and cabinet member for finance, said: “We have a fantastic track record of delivering efficiency savings to protect the services that people need and rely on, but as our funding continues to be cut the challenge for us becomes more and more difficult.

“With all funding announcements the devil is in the detail and it will be a number of weeks until we have all the information needed to be able to see exactly how much of a shortfall this latest cut will leave us in our budget in 2015/16.

“What I can promise today is we will continue to work as hard as possible for our residents and make sure every penny of funding we receive is spent on providing the best possible services we can.”