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Cabinet considers budget plans

News release issued:

Plans to introduce an hour’s free parking in three car parks in the district are being put forward by Wyre Forest District Council’s Cabinet.

The scheme, which is anticipated to cost more than £160,000 over the next three years, is one of the Cabinet’s budget proposals as part of the Council’s Medium Term Financial Strategy.  The Cabinet is also proposing to continue the councillors' Community Leadership Fund. This is when all councillors are allocated £1,000 a year to support worthwhile initiatives, projects, activities and organisations in their ward. Recruiting an additional civil enforcement officer, increasing spending on litter picking and introducing some more accessible play equipment are among the proposals.

The Medium Term Financial Strategy is being discussed at a meeting of the Cabinet on Wednesday 20 December. The discussion will include the plan to increase the district’s proportion of the Council Tax bill by three per cent. This would be an increase of £7.08 in 2024 for Band D households, less than 14p per week. Most properties in the district fall into Band B or C so will pay less than that.

Councillor David Ross, Wyre Forest District Council’s Cabinet Member for Finance and Capital Portfolio said:

“The budget proposals we are putting forward are designed to help us deliver on our corporate plan and one of our priorities is securing financial sustainability for the services our communities value.

Like many councils across the country we are feeling the financial pressure from inflation and other price rises.

As part of the budget proposals, we have set some new targets for increasing net income from our commercial activities. We know we need to continue to make efficiency savings too if we are to close the funding gap.”

Councillor Marcus Hart, Leader of the Council, added “Virtually all councils face difficult choices about how they set their budgets and spend the resources available to them. The administration is taking demonstrable steps to implement priorities that the Council set in its corporate plan for 2023-2027, including responding to what local residents have called for before and since May’s elections and what we promised we would deliver on.”

The Cabinet agenda, which includes the reports can be read on the council’s website.

The meeting will be webcast live at 6pm and can be viewed on the council's livestreaming page. A survey for the public to have their say on the budget proposals will be available from Thursday 21 December.

The final proposals will then go to full council at the annual budget setting meeting in February.

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