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Setting next year's budget

Norfolk County Council wants Norfolk to be a county where businesses, organisations and communities work together to create a better place to work and live in.

Comment on our council tax and budget for 2020/21

Our business plan, Together, for Norfolk, sets out how we are planning to grow our economy, manage development and achieve better futures and outcomes for everyone who lives and works here.

Day to day, we provide services to give children and young people the best start in life, support vulnerable and older people, maintain our highways and transport network, provide library, waste disposal and fire services and work in partnership to grow the economy.

We are currently delivering these services in a changing financial climate that has seen a huge amount of money taken out of local government since 2010. Like all councils, we have come to the end of a long-term funding deal and are awaiting announcements from Government about the level of funding we can expect in the future.

Although we are faced with financial uncertainty we are not sitting back and doing nothing. We have been investing the money we do have on making our services more efficient, keeping families together and helping vulnerable people remain independent. We continue to ask the Government for fairer funding, a better way to pay for social care for older people and more investment in transport links and broadband so that we can help grow our local economy.

Making decisions about how we spend your money is never easy. We have focused our budget on the needs of vulnerable people by increasing the proportion of our budget we spend on social care for children and adults. However, as demand is rising all the time this increase is still not enough to stop our services feeling the squeeze. Even increasing council tax, by the amount we’re allowed to without a local referendum, won’t balance our budget. There are statutory services we need to protect and a limited choice of where savings can be made. This means we must find around £40m savings in savings in 2020-21.

By listening to our residents we know what services you value. And by developing our budget proposals in line with residents’ priorities and our strategy of changing services to make them more efficient, we can make most of the savings we need without directly affecting services.

We now want to hear your views on our council tax and budget approach to help our elected councillors agree a balanced budget for next year.

On 7 October the Council’s Cabinet met and reviewed the strategic and financial planning position for 2020/21 and agreed to go out to consultation on our proposed council tax level, including proposals for the adult social care precept. We also welcome comments on our approach to budget savings or any of our individual proposals themselves.

Our budget proposals are based on increasing council tax by 3.99%. If we do not increase council tax, then we would have to find around an extra £16.3m of savings next year.

Our consultation timetable

23 October 2019
Consultation starts on savings proposals and council tax

10 December 2019
Consultation closes

13 January 2020
Cabinet considers the outcomes of service and financial planning, equality impact assessments and consultation feedback, and recommends a budget to Full Council.

17 February 2020
Norfolk County Council agrees its budget and level of council tax for 2020/21 at the Full Council meeting.

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