Nottingham City Council’s executive board will next week consider a paper with proposals to set a balanced budget over the four years of the Medium Term Financial Plan.
The council must set a balanced budget by law – but Nottingham has had funding taken from it by the Conservatives year on year – with Revenue Support Grant falling from £126.8m a decade ago to £26.7m last year. This is the equivalent of £694 less this year for every household in Nottingham.
City residents will recognise form their own stretched budgets the costs of fuel and general inflation that have hit councils hard up and down the country. Council staff who worked so hard for our city during COVID have had a well deserved nationally agreed pay rise but that comes without any additional funding from Government. Like many city residents, they are actually getting a real-terms cut when inflation is considered – but this also represents an additional cost to council budgets that has not been covered by national grants.
Cllr Adele Williams, Deputy Leader and Portfolio Holder for Finance in Nottingham, said:
“Nottingham people will remember Rishi Sunak bragging that ‘Labour shoved all the funding into deprived urban areas and that needed to be undone. I started the work of undoing that.’
Nottingham deserves better than an out of touch Tory government that drains funding from our hardworking city.
We are amongst the lowest charging local authorities when ranked by average council tax paid – 45th out of 309 last year, but we know any increasing costs at all are unwelcome when people are facing rising food, rent and energy costs and mortgage rates are going up after the disastrous reign of Liz Truss.
Council tax is going up to fill the gap left by the very thing Rishi Sunak was boasting about. They managed to fix the funding formulas to take money from Nottingham, but they never managed, despite repeated promises, to fix adult social care so Nottingham council taxpayers get the bill for that too.
The government has shifted responsibility to local council taxpayers to fund statutory areas such as adult and children’s social care and the costs of homelessness. In both the adult social care precept rise and increased council tax, local people pay for the Conservative failure to fix the scandal of adult social care funding.
Council tax isn’t fair and it isn’t fair that Nottingham people have to fill the hole the Conservatives in Westminster have left in council budgets. We will speak up for a fairer deal for Nottingham in our full council meeting when the budget proposals are considered in March. We ask Nottingham voters to send a powerful message to the Tories through the ballot box in May. The Conservatives have wreaked havoc in our economy, council and household budgets. Nottingham has had enough.”