West Northamptonshire Council Draft Budget 2022/23 Consultation

Closed 1 Feb 2022

Opened 22 Dec 2021

Results updated 8 Feb 2022

This consultation is now closed.

A copy of the consultation analysis report is available below along with a web link to the 15 February 2022 Cabinet meeting papers.

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Overview

At a meeting held on 21st December, West Northamptonshire Council’s Cabinet approved for consultation its draft budget for 2022-23 and we are now seeking views on these proposals.

The main proposals are:

  • To increase the average Council Tax by 2.99%, comprising 1.99% core tax and a further 1% adult social care precept, which is the maximum amount permitted. This would contribute around £9.77m per annum and would represent an average Band D level of Council Tax of £1,613.23 in 2022/23, or the equivalent of £31.02 per week.
  • Fees and charges schedule review
  • Draft Housing Revenue Account (HRA) Budget 2022/23 review, including an increase of Council tenant rent of 4.1%
  • Draft Capital Programme 2022/26

Our budget proposals for next year are made up of £397.4m for schools and £336.4m for all other services we provide. It will ensure we can maintain services and standards and it proposes no service reductions.

This is an increase of £42.2m on the current year, which will enable us to continue improving vital services like social care, refuse collection and recycling, transport, highways, planning and wellbeing.

Service improvements incorporated into the budget includes:

  • Additional investment in the Highways service
  • Additional investment in Refuse and Recycling
  • The promotion of bus services
  • Investment to drive forward the sustainability/green agenda
  • Participation in the National Graduate Development Programme
  • Investment in Young Driver Training
  • Investment in the Flood Service
  • The creation of an HS2 Marshall post for three years
  • The impact of switching off the Bus Lane camera in the St. James’ area
  • Project resource to promote walking and cycling schemes

It will also fund pay and other inflationary costs incurred against existing contracts as well as unavoidable and one-off pressures.

These pressures are offset by £19.6m of productivity gains and additional income and technical budget adjustments of £12.8m, providing for a net budget growth of £9.8m.

The budget assumes an average Council Tax increase of 2.99% which is to be invested in local service provision. This would represent an average increase on a Band D property across the area of £46.84 per year or £0.90p per week.

As part of our approach, we continue our journey to harmonise Council Tax across West Northamptonshire by 2023-24. This means greater increases in some areas.

We’re proposing the following increases in the former borough and district areas:

  • Daventry - £62.93 per year
  • Northampton - £36.24 per year
  • South Northamptonshire - £46.84 per year

Through our Housing Revenue Account (HRA), we’ve identified £45m next year for our new-build and major projects programme, through which we aim to create 200 new homes per year to 2027.

Most of the rest of our HRA budget will be targeted at repairs and improvements on our existing housing stock, along with disabled adaptations.

To ensure we can do all of this, we’ll need to increase rents in our rented housing by 4.1 per cent and charges for garages by 3.1 per cent.

The impacts of Covid 19 have and are likely to continue to place higher demands on all of our services and it is clear we face a challenging medium term financial position.  However, it is important we deliver long term sustainability and affordability to ensure services are fit for the future.  As such, we will continue to review contracts, income sources and assets whilst also identifying wider service improvements and cost efficiencies. 

We also recognise the importance of the ongoing work across our council to reshape and continually improve processes and ways of working so we can reduce the cost of service provision, in order to protect against service reductions and to balance future years’ budgets.

West Northamptonshire Council is focussed on becoming a greener and cleaner authority, a great place in which people can live and work, and visit.

The Council aims to recover and grow the economy, playing a full role as one of the largest authorities within the Oxford-Cambridge Arc, while establishing strong and safe communities with good housing. We want our residents to have the best prospects and the skills to succeed and for children to have the best start in life.

Work will also continue to further the integration of adult social care and health services which is also key to the future, working towards a new way of delivering important services in collaboration with key partners and stakeholders. This makes sense as not only is there a financial efficiency but also it is much less complicated for people who want to access the services.

Your feedback on this consultation is really important to us, and all consultation feedback will be analysed and considered, and will help Councillors make a final decision on the budget at the West Northamptonshire Council Full Council meeting on 24 February 2022. This meeting is held in public. Anyone wishing to submit a statement to the meeting must contact Democratic Services by email democraticservices@westnorthants.gov.uk or by post or in person (One Angel Square, Angel St, Northampton NN1 1ED) by 6pm 23 February 2022. Up to three members of the public are permitted to speak for up to three minutes each on any agenda item although this may be extended at the Chair’s discretion.

Related Documents

Please read the related documents to gain a better understanding of the budget proposals before you comment on them.

Have your say

The following sections gives details of the budget proposals. Please tell us your views by completing this questionnaire. You do not have to answer all of the questions or give us your feedback on every section. If you do not wish to answer a question or give feedback on a specific section, then you can skip those questions and move on to the next section.

This questionnaire focusses on the new proposals for the draft budget 2022/23 that will likely affect residents and service users. However, you can comment on anything within the Draft Budget in the comment boxes.

Your feedback will be part of a report with many other people’s feedback, so you will not be personally identified.

You can also access this online questionnaire free of charge at any West Northamptonshire Council library. Due to current restrictions, customers are asked to check the opening times of the library you wish to visit and book an appointment in advance. Please see the Library website or telephone 0300 126 7000 to check times and make a booking.

Alternatively, you can email or send your comments in by post using the contact details below, or by handing it in to one of West Northamptonshire Council’s libraries.

You can also hold your own group discussion with others and provide your joint feedback either by completing the online Group Facilitator’s Feedback Form or by downloading the PDF version below and emailing or posting the form back to us.

If you have any queries, comments or would like a copy of this questionnaire in another format (including paper, easy read or large print) you can contact us by email, post or telephone. Our contact details are as follows:

Email address: haveyoursay@westnorthants.gov.uk

Telephone: 0300 126 7000

Postal address:

  • Budget Consultation Response
  • West Northamptonshire Council
  • One Angel Square 
  • Angel Street
  • Northampton
  • NN1 1ED

The deadline for completing this questionnaire is midnight 1 February 2022.

For information about how consultation and engagement responses are managed, please see the consultation and engagement privacy notice.

Thank you for helping us by completing this questionnaire.

Interests

  • Consultations
  • Council tax
  • Finance