Author Topic: CCBC costs and cutting  (Read 167947 times)

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Offline SteveH

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Re: CCBC costs and cutting.......Tax rises and service cuts loom
« Reply #585 on: December 21, 2023, 10:04:56 am »
Tax rises and service cuts loom as two North Wales councils get just 2% budget rise
Gwynedd and Conwy had the lowest increases in Wales in terms of the local government settlement

Two North Wales councils have received the lowest local government settlements in the country. Both Conwy and Gwynedd will get just a 2% budget increase.

Denbighshire, at 3.7%, received the most in the region while Newport in Gwent, south Wales, had the highest settlement in Wales, receiving a 4.7% hike. Flintshire will receive the third lowest rise in Wales at 2.2%, Anglesey an additional 2.5%, and Wrexham 3.2%.

Other south Wales councils such as Cardiff and Swansea received increases of 4.1% and 3.8% respectively. The average increase across Wales is 3.1%, and leaders are already warning the below inflation settlements will inevitably mean large council tax rises and cuts in already stretched services.

cont https://www.dailypost.co.uk/news/north-wales-news/tax-rises-service-cuts-loom-28326681?IYA-reg=49560bcd-5a9c-47f0-8fc5-ba2e71710589




Offline SteveH

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Re: CCBC costs and cutting........Wales social services face cuts
« Reply #586 on: January 02, 2024, 09:40:51 am »
Wales social services face cuts over ?646m budget gap

Social services in Wales have forecast a budget gap of ?646m over the next three years.

Councils, which provide support and care to communities, have warned that cuts will have to be made unless they receive extra funding.

The Welsh government said it faced an incredibly tough financial situation.

The Welsh Local Government Association (WLGA) said councils were facing record levels of demand in both children's and adult services.

That has led to a ?108.7m overspend this year.

The WLGA and the Association of Directors of Social Services have predicted their funding gaps in social services if services stay the same for the next three years.

cont https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-67856156


Offline SteveH

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Re: CCBC costs and cutting
« Reply #587 on: January 03, 2024, 10:20:32 am »
Conwy Council's cabinet will consider charging schools interest on bridging loans. The cabinet will meet at the council?s Bodlondeb HQ next Tuesday (January 9) to discuss the controversial proposals in light of the ?24.5m black hole the council faces next year.

It comes after education budgets were slashed by 5% across the board last year, with council tax upped by 9.9% and service budgets elsewhere slashed by 10%. The latest proposed move would save the cash-strapped authority over ?39,000.

cont https://www.dailypost.co.uk/news/north-wales-news/cash-strapped-council-could-start-28378266?IYA-reg=49560bcd-5a9c-47f0-8fc5-ba2e71710589

Offline SteveH

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Re: CCBC costs and cutting
« Reply #588 on: January 12, 2024, 10:01:41 am »
Update

Conwy?s cabinet unanimously voted in favour of charging cash-strapped schools interest on bridging loans. The cabinet met at Conwy ?s Bodlondeb HQ this week to discuss the controversial plans as the council faces a ?24.5m black hole next year.

The move follows education budgets being slashed by 5% across the board, council tax being upped by 9.9%, and service budgets elsewhere being slashed by 10%. But charging schools interest on loans from the council will generate around ?39,000 for Conwy.

cont https://www.dailypost.co.uk/news/north-wales-news/conwy-council-charge-schools-interest-28427700

Offline SteveH

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Re: CCBC costs and cutting
« Reply #589 on: January 13, 2024, 09:14:10 am »
Conwy?s leader has slammed the funding formula used to calculate how much money the authority is awarded by the Welsh Government annually.

In December both Conwy and Gwynedd came bottom of the local government settlement table of 22 Welsh authorities with just a 2% budget rise.

Conwy?s sum amounts to less than an extra ?4m extra in 2024/25, despite teacher and council staff pay increases of ?12m, inflation, and rising costs.

Whilst Gwynedd was bottom with Conwy with just a 2% rise, Denbighshire at 3.7% received the highest percentage increase in North Wales whilst Newport in Gwent, south Wales, had the highest settlement in the country, receiving a 4.7% hike.

cont https://www.northwalespioneer.co.uk/news/24045140.conwy-council-leader-funding-formula-unfair/


Offline SteveH

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Re: CCBC costs and cutting
« Reply #590 on: January 17, 2024, 09:42:56 am »
Two counties linked by a landmark bridge could soon be separated by a large gulf in care fees if proposed plans go through. A care group has welcomed Conwy council?s proposal to increase fees by up to 20% after warnings that care homes were at risk of financial meltdown and closure.

But Care Forum Wales (CFW) chairman Mario Kreft has highlighted the gap that will now exists between that local authority and across the Foryd Bridge in Denbighshire - which is looking at an 8% hike. They said Denbighshire will be paying ?9,224 a year less per person than Conwy towards the cost of giving exactly the same level of nursing care to residents, which could work out at nearly ?370,000 a year at a 40-bed care home.

The proposed fee increases in Conwy will go before the council?s Finance and Resources Overview and Scrutiny Committee for ratification next Monday (January 22). According to CFW, they came about because the council commissioned leading healthcare economists Laing & Buisson to analyse the true costs of care providers for the current year.

cont https://www.dailypost.co.uk/news/north-wales-news/9k-gap-could-open-up-28458812?IYA-reg=49560bcd-5a9c-47f0-8fc5-ba2e71710589

Offline SteveH

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Re: CCBC costs and cutting
« Reply #591 on: January 20, 2024, 10:27:05 am »
Conwy ratepayers could be facing a double digit council tax hike. A Conwy County Council finance report has modelled for an 11% rise. And the cash-strapped council is proposing a range of cuts, which include cutting or reducing nappy bag collections from once weekly to once monthly, closing public toilets, and reducing library opening hours.

The authority is around ?25m in the red, and consequently has modelled for an 8%, 9%, 10%, and 11% council tax rise. This follows a huge 9.9% increase last year, meaning Conwy residents could be paying 20% more in council tax in April 2024 than 13 months before.

cont https://www.dailypost.co.uk/news/north-wales-news/conwy-ratepayers-facing-double-digit-28479572

Offline SteveH

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Re: CCBC costs and cutting
« Reply #592 on: January 21, 2024, 09:57:17 am »
See how much your Council owes as local authority debts hit ?122bn
David Dubas-Fisher says experts have predicted an 'extreme and long-lasting' impact on local services, look at our interactive map to find out more about your area

Conwy
Total amassed debt: ?115,556,000
Debt per person: ?1,006


"Small district councils have very little room for manoeuvre when finances are squeezed, relying on charges (such as parking fees) for a lot of their income. Unitary authorities are facing the demographic pressures on social services, social care and special educational needs."

Dame Meg said beyond 'day-to-day pressures', the PAC warned in 2020 that some councils had 'not only pursued strategies' of commercial investment exposing them to 'high levels of risk' but 'normalised behaviour' and 'optimistically believed' there was 'little downside' to commercial activity. The committee chair said we can 'add to this the delay in public sector audits', and many councillors and taxpayers were 'blind to the risk'.

Councils have been urged to undertake commercial investments for the last ten years to generate income sources separate from grants, council tax, rates, fees and charges. Town halls have bought hundreds of assets, from shopping centres to office parks, cinemas, energy firms and housing developments.

full article https://www.inyourarea.co.uk/news/council-debt-hits-122bn-check-your-local-authority-with-our-interactive-map/


Offline SteveH

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Re: CCBC....THOUSANDS of dwellings are being left unoccupied across Conwy
« Reply #593 on: January 23, 2024, 10:09:24 am »
THOUSANDS of dwellings are being left unoccupied across Conwy, Office for National Statistics (ONS) data has shown.

Numbers taken from the ONS census in 2021 found that there are 5,750 empty homes across the county.

Unoccupied dwellings are units of accommodation that have no usual residents.

Some may be used by short-term residents or visitors as second homes, while some are truly vacant ? i.e. no indication of being used as a second home and are not inhabited by short-term residents.

cont https://www.northwalespioneer.co.uk/news/24067923.5-000-dwellings-conwy-empty-figures-show/

Offline Helig

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Re: CCBC costs and cutting
« Reply #594 on: January 23, 2024, 12:11:41 pm »
This is an outrage when there is a housing crisis. CCBC should contact Brighton and Hove City Council for information on how they deal with empty properties there. When I lived in Hove the council had a policy of identifying empty properties, tracing the owners and offering to buy them. In the event they couldn't trace an owner, or make contact with them, they used to put a compulsory purchase order on and take over the property that way.  Any property which had been empty for 6+ months was targeted. The council would do repairs and any other work necessary. This was very successful and they brought thousands of places back into use for people to live in.

Offline Cambrian

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Re: CCBC costs and cutting
« Reply #595 on: January 23, 2024, 02:24:53 pm »
Good point Helig.  Trouble is officers at CCBC recoil at any external suggestions unless they think of them!  Hastings BC imaginatively used Section 215 of the Town and Country Planning Act to sort out eyesore or dilapidated properties;  Conwy were asked to do this proactively  a few years ago but not much sign of that happening. 

Offline SteveH

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Re: CCBC costs and cutting
« Reply #596 on: January 25, 2024, 09:29:38 am »
Conwy ratepayers are facing an "uncomfortably high" council tax rise and a cut to school budgets but slashing nappy collection services to once monthly is a step too far. That was the view of cash strapped Conwy County Council's leader, councillor Charlie McCoubrey at a cabinet meeting yesterday.

The council is "modelling an 11% council tax hike but it may have to cut the school budget by a further 6%. Cabinet members will ask the council?s heads of service to go back to the drawing board and look at more cuts, having already identified over ?7.7m of savings for 2024/25 - but it still faces a black hole in its budget of around ?25m.

cont https://www.dailypost.co.uk/news/north-wales-news/slashing-nappy-collection-service-step-28500439?IYA-reg=49560bcd-5a9c-47f0-8fc5-ba2e71710589

Offline SteveH

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Re: CCBC costs and cutting.....Update on empty homes
« Reply #597 on: January 26, 2024, 10:02:03 am »
Wales has six times more empty properties than second homes and these should 'take priority'
A inquiry by MPs is looking at the impact of population changes in Wales on the housing sector and the Welsh language

Bringing empty homes back into use should be the mainstay of attempts to ease the housing crisis in Wales, MPs heard. Almost six times more properties in the country are classed as empty than there are second homes, the Welsh Affairs Committee was told.

The House of Commons committee has launched an inquiry into the impact of population change in Wales. This week it examined how net migration is affecting housing stocks and the Welsh language ? and what can be done to provide desperately needed homes.

cont https://www.dailypost.co.uk/news/north-wales-news/wales-six-times-more-empty-28510356


Offline SteveH

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Re: CCBC costs and cutting
« Reply #598 on: January 29, 2024, 12:56:09 pm »
Conwy councillors slammed the Welsh Government for offering a grant of ?1.575m to pay towards new electric recycling vehicles whilst the council struggles to meet education and social service bills. Cash-strapped Conwy faces a huge council tax rise and widespread service cuts after receiving the lowest local government settlement rise in Wales together with Gwynedd.

But whilst the council is busy trying to balance its books for 2024/25, the Welsh Government dropped a one-time non-negotiable take-it-or-leave it offer for Conwy to receive a grant of ?1.575m. The money will fund nine new recycling vehicles, some of which will be electric, helping Conwy meet Welsh Government carbon-emission targets.

cont https://www.dailypost.co.uk/news/north-wales-news/welsh-governments-take-leave-offer-28519874?IYA-reg=49560bcd-5a9c-47f0-8fc5-ba2e71710589

Offline SteveH

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Re: CCBC costs and cutting
« Reply #599 on: January 31, 2024, 10:07:55 am »
The huge cost to just one North Wales county when fierce storms rip into the UK
The cost comes as councils are struggling to balance the books

Storm Babet cost Conwy County Council around ?1.5m, it has been revealed. The storm wreaked havoc across North Wales when it hit between October 18 and 21, 2023, causing widespread damage, transport delays, and flooding.

Speaking at a cabinet meeting, Cllr Goronwy Edwards, lead member for the environment, roads, and facilities, was speculating about the authority having to reduce vital services to balance the books when he revealed the extent of the damage caused by the October storm.

Since the bad weather in October, North Wales has also been battered by storms Isha and Jocelyn, both of which hit last week. "Look at the storms we are having,? said Cllr Edwards. ?Who knows how much cost we're going to have to pick up with some of these storms? I know that Storm Babet cost us about ?1.5m. But it's still uncertain whether we will get some funding from the Welsh Government towards that, and we are only in the middle of winter now

cont https://www.dailypost.co.uk/news/north-wales-news/huge-cost-just-one-north-28520587