The District Council Budget




The District Council Budget for 2009-2010 was passed last night.

There was no Lib Dem whip on (there very seldom is…). But all five of us decided to support the budget proposals. Here are the bare bones:

  • After working on this budget over two council ‘awaydays’, we decided to support it once the Tories dropped the idea of increasing all the car parking charges – this is no time to hurt our town centres
  • Car parking charges for 1,2,3,4 and 5 hours will stay the same , though the all-day and season ticket rates will still increase
  • We are still investigating one or two budget issues with the officers
  • The District council tax will go up by 4.9 percent – though most of the council tax we pay is charged by the County Council.
  • Our Labour government gives us the second lowest financial support per head of population of any council in Essex. That’s harsh, but it was even worse under the last Conservative government, when one year we got the second worst support of any council in England.
  • The District Council has 4 million pounds on deposit with the Bank of Ireland, plus more with the Bank of Scotland, and Royal Bank of Scotland
  • To quote the officers’ report “The main increase to the core estimates revolves around a substantial reduction in the income streams from Planning. Building Control, Parking Fees and Land Charges….”
  • Also income from investments (i.e. bank interest) is expected to fall from ?836,000 to ?339,0000
  • There are no new ‘growth’ items this year for improving services. And to quote Terry Cutmore ‘ There’s a risk that things might be delayed for a few years”
  • For the first time, the council will be charging for the collection of bulky and electrical items. The charge will be ?15 for three items, plus an additional ?5 for each further item
  • There were no reporters at last night’s meeting, so it will be interesting to see how much of this actually gets into the press…..

    About the author, admin

  • Fred Goodwin ex senior director of The Royal Bank of Scotland should lose his pension. He hasn’t done well for his company and should suffer the consequences. Should the senior director for any company not be held responsible? Letting him get away with such a big pension is ludicrous.

  • Fred Goodwin was ultimately an employee – the Shareholders being the employer. His contract was signed by the employer, his contract stated his pension. The Government knew the size of the pension yet did nothing at the time about it, contracts signed – job done. If his pension is clawed back, it would be a breach of contract under English law. If the law is amended to allow this to happen, that law would have to be very carefully worded to ensure there were no loopholes that would enable every member of society the ability to break a contract without recourse. Show me one law that currently has no loopholes – they are few and far between. If the law is changed to enable this to happen, we will all suffer as a consequence.

    I don’t agree with the size of the pension, but there is no point crying over spilt milk, the RBS shareholders and the governement screwed up.

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